The Institute of Software Practitioners of Nigeria (ISPON) has commended the President of the federal republic, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo for allowing the conversion of a part of the old Federal Secretariat, Ikoyi Lagos to a Technology Park.

In a press statement in Lagos, the President of the Institute, Mr. Chijioke Agu said the President deserved commendation "for practicalising his vision of Nigeria's role in the global knowledge society through software promotion by his generous grant of a part of the former Federal Secretariat Ikoyi, to the National Software Development Initiative (NSDI) on the February 14, 2005.

The Institute called on the private sector to begin to evaluate and embrace the use of Nigeria developed software as a way of expressing confidence in the ability of Nigerian expertise rather than insist on the current trend whereby they patronise foreign software at unjustifiable costs and at the expense of the growth of local talent.

ISPON also expressed its gratitude to the chief executive of Zenith Bank, Mr. Jim Ovia for the tremendous role he played before the success of the presidential directive, and asked for similar support from other captains of sectors of the Nigerian economy.

While assuring that ISPON members have taken up the challenge and will ensure that his vision is translated into real measurable impact on the economy, the ISPON president further urged government to ensure the establishment of a National Software Development Commission which would serve at the co-ordinating agency of all the activities required to take Nigeria into the software world. It would also be the job of the Commission to recommend reasonable import duty on imported software to government.

The Institute of Software Practitioners of Nigeria (ISPON) is a body of software developers, writers and programmers.