NIGERIA AND DIGITIZATION, TILL WHEN???
The inception and fervent need for digitization in the world’s system and affairs have been long sketched and systematically categorized in the most modern and civilized format by computer scientists which encompasses economic, political, academic, historical, medical, entertainment, communication, transportation, agricultural and administrative purposes; and has ran into a huge cost in terms of funding and achieving a civilized world, where living is at it’s best, knowledge at it’s peak and computer interconnection humanly enhanced.
Digitization is of crucial important to data processing, storage and transmission as it converts data and information of all kinds such as objects, texts, sound, images, or voice into digital formats of single binary code, hence the lead way to digitalization which is the use of digital technologies to change business models and integration of digital technologies into everyday life.
Most countries considered to be more civilized and influential like U.S.A, China, U.K, have embarked on digitization, and achieved over 70% of it’s purpose in different sectors of their economy and livelihood, thereby taking the lead in global businesses, medicals, Information Communication Technologies and Modern Scientific Innovations. By 2030, 80% of heritage financial firms will go out of business, become commodities or exist only formally.
Just like a snail, Nigeria has the most lackadaisical approach to digitization and yet far unready for digitalization. The ideology of Nigeria still in analog era can be traced politically to caliber, age and mental enhancement of leaders governing the Nigerian affairs.
Politically, the affairs of Nigeria is still held hostage in the hands of analog leaders who have little or no idea of digital transformation. Every four years, the election process suffers mismanagement and inaccuracy of data and information due to less or no digital machines for effective voting processes. The poor masses queue under the sun for over four hours to cast their vote while INEC battles with slow and inefficient analog machines.
In 2018, the Nigerian President still travels abroad for just medical check ups and spends barely one year for treatment which costs millions of Naira due to lack of digital medical equipments. In four years of every administration, the Nigerian government spend trillions of dollars abroad as medical allowance right from the presidency, senate, house of reps, governors, ministers, and commissioners, meanwhile Federal and state owned hospitals are filled with analog and non efficient equipments and the poor masses suffer and die of modern health challenges that requires digital equipments for diagnosis and cure.
The Information Communication Technology in Nigeria suffers doom, except social media. The government and state owned broadcast media still operates analog and the equipments are dead at work. The analog transmitters, consoles, microphones, monitors, live and recording studios, editing suites, cameras, and tape recorders sets the Nigerian Communication System anticlockwise, attaching failure to the gathering and dissemination of information in a more enhanced manner. Except Channels TV, Sylverbird and other private owned stations, not even Nigerian Television Authority NTA can boost of full digital transformation. Almost all state owned television stations cast news on papers without the use of teleprompter.
The transportation sector is 50years somewhat far from digital transformation. First, lack of good and modernized roads, airports, and seaports; acrobats of olden vehicles and trucks seems to occupy better chances of transforming the transportation sector into having digitally enhanced vehicles. Ninety percent (90%) of of travel tickets bookings are been made manually, having 10% made on the private owned digitized transport companies who run online services on a high cost through the help of social media; Millions of Nigerians still doubt the online services of those companies, hence government doesn’t carryout such services, they see it as fraud.
The financial institutions still operates half digital, the computer systems used in processing financial transactions are so slow that it takes 20mins or more while booting, 15mins to process each customer’s transaction and sometimes 10mins, 2hours or even a whole day before one gets alert on their cellphones. The very Mobile Banking Application still suffers network hitch by service providers. 75% of business transactions are done manually with cash, as most businessmen do not beacon on the unstable services of mobile banking. The banks are often overcrowded at every hour of the day, bankers still recount monies manually to ensure accuracy by the analog machines. The ATM stand is likened to the olden days community pipe born water queue, having fifty (50) customers in each queue under the sun waiting for the ATM machine to resurrect from network comma, after which takes 10minutes to process transaction data and peradventure it encounters any technical hitch, it debits the customer without releasing the cash. It is simply quite unfortunate that Nigerians still fight and abuse themselves at the ATM stand due to the impatience of the Nigerian ATM miracle.
In the academic sector, teachers struggles with chalks and blackboards, manual registration and data entry , paper and pencil examination, old and unequipped medical and computer laboratories, even computer studies is been taught orally and demonstrated on the blackboard not even a projector to exhibit the typographical enhancement of Ms Word, the presentation and slide transitions of Ms Power Point or the Publication of Ms Publisher. After beating around the bushes of 80’s, the academic productivity and psychosis of graduates remains substandard to embrace the digital world.
The rate of illegal immigrant and emigration increases daily as Nigeria have no database for her own citizens let alone for migration purposes.
♣The Only Antidote For A Digitized Nigeria To Be Achieved Is To Have Digitized Leaders