Techforest: 2017 in Perspective

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Techforest

2017 was full of activities and so many events happened that will shape the tech communities and ecosystems within the Nigeria South South and South East in the nearest future. From the government perspective, to collaborations in the private sector and various tech communities, the activities of the passing year will help model what is expected to lead to a boom in the tech domain in 2018.

We can never forget various organisations who partnered with us in the past year.  Although we came on board sometimes in August 2017, the experiences and ties we created within the last four months has been very fruitful.  We came on board just when Mark Essien of hotels.ng was completing his signatures to partner with the Akwa Ibom State Ministry of Science and Technology to train Akwa Ibom youths in the hotels.ng internship program.

Mark Essien
Mark Essien, the CEO of Hotels.ng inspiring youths in Akwa Ibom State during the official launch of HNG Internship program at the Ibom e-library

Techforest followed the internship program to a logical conclusion and we were pleased to witness that we have some Akwa Ibom youths who are very smart when it comes to learning new skills.  The program was successful and 50 developers were birthed to be part of the existing communities. This was a milestone in the development of our youths and we sincerely thank Mark Essien for his concern for our youths.

IOLED means Iboro Otu’s Leadership and Entrepreneurial Discourse. IOLED is powered by ALERT Nigeria, a non-governmental organization.  In 2017 IOLED funded an essay competition that saw 24 winners emerging as ALERT Nigeria Ambassadors. The essay competition was a drive to find solutions to some pressing problems in our various communities.  Techforest followed the event religiously to the end since it was a solution-oriented program and tech was greatly involved.

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Iboro Otu of Alert Nigeria was solidly behind most tech projects in 2017

Some Hubs were very outstanding in 2017 and we can’t shy away from mentioning them as we draw the curtains for the year. Tech hubs offers tech solutions to various clients and most hubs do train and harness the talents of young people while using them to proffer these solutions.

Start Innovation Hub provided series of contents for us on this platform as they consistently  held events that boosted the tech ecosystem in Akwa Ibom State. Located at the Ibom e-library, the hub housed the hotels.ng interns throughout the period of internship and provided a co-working space for the successful interns. Start Innovation Hub was a boom in 2017 and while we appreciate various level of skills in techforest, we can never forget the hub. Start Innovation Hub is the Android king in Akwa Ibom.

Hanson Johnson Delivering a keynote address at a tech event.

Root Hub is located at AKEES Plaza opposite the famous Ibom e-library.  This hub has been instrumental to the training of thousands of young people in Akwa Ibom State in various tech skills.  The Onuk Inkteractive which is the graphic department of hub is instrumental to the design of various logos – including techforest and various graphic designs that dotted the landscape of our tech ecosystem.

I met Sunday Ukafia of Xpress Hub during the opening ceremony of the IOLED essay competition. We later met at 205 Aka Road where the hub is situated.  Xpress Technologies is an ICT services and solutions provider passionately committed to helping organizations excel, using cutting-edge technologies to place her clients ahead of competition. This is done through the provision of the very best of innovative solutions and services that are simply “express” hence the name Xpress Technologies.

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Tony Onuk, Co-founder, The RootHub

Hubitz has been fantastic in all ramifications.  Located at no. 69 Enwe Street Uyo, Hubitz provide a co-working space for startups and other businesses.  It must interest you to know that if you have any questions as relates ALERT Nigeria, then you can walk into Hubitz at 69 Enwe Street, Uyo.  Behind the doors at the hub are tech gurus who specializes in various tech solutions like Gabriel Ekpo’s car diagnostics services, Networking – LAN and WAN, hardware solutions, dish installation and even some gaming facilities to keep you relaxed while innovating.

RAD 5 Tech Hub is located at 7 Factory Road by Eziukwu Junction Aba, Abia State.  Since our coverage spans Nigeria South South and South East, we came in contact with this hub after their successful hosting of Tech Summer Code Camp for kids and teens tagged “Abia4Tech TeenHack.” We must commend the good works done in Abia State by this hub and hope to partner more in the coming year.

We will not forget some communities who played very vital roles in techforest in 2017. Digiclan Africa is a community of Digital Marketers who occasionally come together to learn and harness new tools available for brand promotion and other businesses associated with Digital Marketing. Google Developers Groups in Uyo, Abia State and Port Harcourt, Rivers State were all awesome in the year 2017 and we look forward to more in the coming year.

Our dream has been to export technology from this region therefore we appreciate the effort of Jude Ben of ShareQube who has been keeping the flag flying.  Jude has been to Europe as a Machine Learning Innovator proofing ‘Akwa Ibom got the talents and skills.’

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Prof. Nse Essien’s effort in convincing Akwa Ibom youths that the government is interested in the affairs of techies in the State is presently commended.

The government of Governor Udom Gabriel Emmanuel is showing some signs that the government believes in tech and the positive impact the sector can add to the economy of the state.  Under the able leadership of Professor Nse Essien, the Commissioner for Science and Technology, Akwa Ibom State, the government partnered successfully with Hotels.ng by providing a conducive environment for the interns to learn new skills in the internship.  It is on record that the internship program was the most successful any government in the state has ever organized seeing the outcome of the internship program.  This was enabled by the positive attitude of the present government to the tech communities in the state.

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Elder Ufot Ebong has been a source of inspiration to the youths of the State so it believed that in the coming year more entrepreneurs will emerge through the AKEES Program.

AKEES is one of governor Udom Emmanuel’s program aimed at providing seed funding and to help startups find a foot in the entrepreneurial domain.  Elder Ufot Ebong, the SSA to the governor on due process runs the program and has been very supportive of tech communities and startups in the state.  Root hub of course is situated at AKEES Plaza opposite the Ibom Hall on IBB Way. Elder Ebong has however promised to look more into tech startups in the coming year, 2018.

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Governor Udom Emmanuel seems determined to turn the Akwa Ibom from a civil service state to an entrepreneurial hub

Generally speaking, 2017 was awesome and it was our first outing as a nascent tech domain with focus on Nigeria South South and South South East. We are looking forward to a more collaborative outing in the coming year 2018, as we will have more grip of tech establishments and institutions within the Niger Delta and Nigeria South East. Techforest is a media wing of the tech ecosystem in Nigeria South South and South East.  We will do well to inform you of latest products in communication gadgets, household equipment, autos, etc. in the coming year and we will also inform you on where to get these stuffs unadulterated and at a lower price.

 

Stay tuned with us in 2018. It’s going to be awesome.  We have launched a campaign to draw government’s attention to the Ibom Science Park and we believe this will be looked into in the coming year.  The Science Park will be our meeting points since the Ibom e-library is going to be taken over by the Oil and Gas Communities. Once again, we are grateful to all who stood by us in 2017 and we look forward to a better 2018.

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