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Osita Chidoka identified by a young man in the market. Image: OsitaChidoka/Facebook

Former Minister, Osita Chidoka Surprise @ Computer Village Visit

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*That the only defining attribute of the Computer Village was a bridge and a transportation hub for 15 years is only a testimony to the potentials of a reimagined Nigeria

Former Minister of Aviation, Mr. Osita Chidoka yesterday announced via the social media with amazement his visit to Computer Village,  a multibillion dollars technology cluster in the hub of Ikeja Lagos.

“Yesterday I decided to visit Computer village. Two things triggered the visit.First is Ike Chioke’s lecture at Nkata Umuibe titled Mkpuru Onye Kuru: Reinventing Enterprise n’Ala Igbo where he mentioned Computer Village as one of the markets driven by Igbo Apprenticeship with over $2bn in annual turnover. That lecture got me thinking. 

“The second trigger was the election of 2019 and the analysis by Atedo Peterside that ‘All three tiers of government combined now account for only 8.54 per cent of National Aggregate Demand as at June 30, 2018 (latest figures available).

“Conversely, the private sector now accounts for a gigantic 91.46 per cent of Aggregate Demand.

“These are statistics that many business savvy people have sensed intuitively and that is why more and more businesses have stopped bothering to supply goods and/or services to the phenomenally corrupt government sector.” 

“So if government accounts for only 8.5% of aggregate demand then we need to focus our energies as politicians, Policy analysts and Party leaders on understanding the needs and drivers of  the 94% of the national aggregate demand.

“Anyway I went to computer village. The area has changed from my days in 1988 at Focus tutorial college Yaba were some days I have to go through Ikeja roundabout to get to Yaba from Akowonjo.

“As an undergraduate I spent time at Fela’s Shrine and Klass Night club in the company of John Chukwu’s son John Jr, and my friend Uche Ekwe and his brother Emeka. My classmates at Focus also partied at The Roof nightclub not far from Ikeja roundabout I remember Ehigie Aikhomu, Nnamdi Uchendu, Tola Obembe, and others. 

“Nothing prepared me for the transformation I saw at the computer village. The only place from the past I saw was Stella’s kitchen which use to be our lunch bukka back in the 1990s. Trust me I stopped and enjoyed the Iyan and Egwusi.  “I stopped at a few phone shops and noticed the high number of young girls working in the shops. Discussion with some shop owners revealed a daily turnover of between N500k and N2M depending on their size. Not a few boys recognized me and expressed their solidarity for the Atiku court case while explaining their business model to me. 

“The Lagos consumer protection council was holding a stakeholder visit to the Market and one of them recognized me and quickly invited me to join the awareness campaign. I joined briefly and quickly took my leave as I was on a journey of discovery and learning. 

“The visit was enlightening and has given me the impetus to visit other markets across the country while listening to the needs of the 94% whose enterprise is the springboard for a Nigerian revival. “To think that 15years ago there was no computer village and yet today a thriving economic center employing young girls and boys, unleashing technical knowledge growth and promoting a base for tech innovation exist where the only defining attribute of the area was a bridge and a transportation hub is only a testimony to the potentials of a reimagined Nigeria”.

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