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Prof. Aliyu, AI Practitioner to Keynote ABoICT 2024

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CommunicationsWeek Media Limited, a certified global ICT company with over two million online subscribers, is delighted and proud to announce Prof. Yakub Aliyu, as the keynote speaker at Africa’s Beacon of ICT Merit and Leadership Distinguished Lecture series 2024.

 

Aliyu, will be speaking on the theme: Artificial Intelligence (AI): The Good, The Complex and The Anticipated”, this leans heavily on the fact that AI changing our lives– we just need to know where to look today.

This year’s rebranded Africa’s Beacon of ICT Merit and Leadership Distinguished Lecture/Awards Series is slated for Saturday, May 25, 2024 at the Four Points by Sheraton, Lagos.

The event is the most prestigious annual event that brings together captains of industry in both technology and financial worlds.

According to Ken Nwogbo, CEO, Communication Week Media Ltd, organisers of the ABoICT Distinguished Lecture/Awards Series, “the choice of Prof. Yakub Aliyu is deliberate because of his exceptional career in Artificial Intelligence (AI)”.

He added that, AI is considered to have the potential to instigate a fourth industrial revolution,1 and is dramatically changing people’s patterns of interaction and economic activities.

“The traditional factors of production and physical capital and labour may no longer promote substantial economic growth. It is generally believed that AI will be one of the most important factors determining future economic growth,” he said.

A professor of microelectronics and a scholar-practitioner in artificial intelligence and deep machine learning for industrial applications and high-speed application processors. His research interests include Multimodal AI models for high-efficiency industrial robot applications and Human AI interactions.

He also has adjunct academic professorships at five African, USA, and UK universities. Holds a BS in Applied Physics Electronics from Karlsruhe and A Bello Universities in Germany and Nigeria, an MBA in International Business Management from the University of London, an MSEE (Master of Engineering, Electronics), and a Ph.D. in Electronics Engineering from the University of Wales.

Prof. Aliyu is the global quality director for Bourns Inc., Riverside, California, USA, an electronics system, and components manufacturer. I oversee quality functions in 21 factories worldwide.

He has also held quality and operational management leadership positions at National Semiconductors, Bell Labs-Lucent Technology, Texas Instrument, Global Foundries, and Roper Technologies USA.

Authored and coauthored over 30 Advanced Technology United States-issued patents in High-Speed Application Processors and Contributed to over 40 international impact Journals, chapters, and conferences; FASI, SMIEEE USA, MIEE UK, M. Inst pf Physics Chartered Phys and C Eng UK.

Past lecturers included Dr. Ernest Ndukwe, then executive vice chairman, Nigeria Communications Commission (NCC); Engr. Yomi Bolarinwa, former Director-General of National Broadcasting Commission (NBC); Dr. Jean Luc Fort, CEO at OR System France and a specialist in Counterparty Risk; and Professor Chris Nwagboso, Chairman, Knowledge Factory International, United Kingdom.

Others are: Uche Orji, managing director/chief executive officer, Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority (NSIA); Biodu Omoniyi, Managing Director/CEO, VDT Communications; Ayotunde Coker, Managing Director, Rack Centre Limited; Peter Adedayo Arogundade, managing director and chief executive officer, Sidmach Technologies Nigeria Limited; Dr. Adewale Obadare, chief visionary officer, Digital Encode and John Obaro, CEO and founder of Systemspecs; Prof. Isa Pantanmi, minister of Communications and Digital Economy; Dr. Seyi Akindeind, co-founder, Digital Encode; Dr Krishnan Ranganath, Regional Director, Africa Data Centres.


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AfriLabs, Korea-Africa Foundation in Strategic Partnership to Boost African Innovation

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African hubs network AfriLabs has signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the Korea-Africa Foundation for a strategic partnership aimed at driving innovation and economic growth across the continent.

AfriLabs is a network organisation that is committed to driving innovation and entrepreneurship on the continent by bringing together technology hubs, startups, investors, and other key stakeholders in the ecosystem.

Having recently announced the admission of 16 new hubs, AfriLabs now has a network of 478 hubs across 260 cities in 53 African nations.

The Korea-Africa Foundation, meanwhile, aims to serve as a platform for collaboration between the private and public sectors, and to strengthen exchange and cooperation with African countries.

The collaboration between the two aims to bridge the gap between Korean and African startups by leveraging each other’s expertise and resources. This will be achieved through the exchange of insights on youth development, the launch of joint research initiatives, and the fostering of a dynamic ecosystem that cultivates talent and entrepreneurial spirit in both regions.

“At AfriLabs, we are dedicated to unlocking Africa’s full potential and generating wealth through strategic alliances. This partnership with the Korea-Africa Foundation unlocks a treasure trove of opportunities for startups, granting them access to a global network, invaluable resources, and unparalleled industry knowledge.

“Together, we will empower the next generation of African innovators and entrepreneurs, paving the way for sustainable development and a thriving economy,” said Anna Ekeledo, executive director of AfriLabs.


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$750m World Bank Loan:  FG May Reintroduce Telcoms, Gambling Taxes

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Federal government may reintroduce the controversial telecom tax and other fiscal measures to fulfill one of the conditions for The World Bank’s fresh $750 million loan to Nigeria.

$750m World Bank Loan:  FG May Reintroduce Telcoms, Gambling Taxes

Experts have however strongly opposed new taxes, calling them harmful to the sector’s survival and the larger economy.

But The World Bank in programme appraisal document, dated May 17, 2024, on the loan disbursement to Nigeria, said that $750 million loan to Nigeria will support the federal government’s policy reforms.

A copy of the plan’s document posted on the World Bank website indicated that the government might reintroduce the excises on telecom services, and EMT levy on electronic money transfers through the Nigerian Banking System among other taxes.

Recall that on June 13, Wale Edun, minister of finance and coordinating minister of the economy, announced the approval of two financial support packages by the World Bank valued at $2.25 billion.

The loan consists of $1.5 billion for Nigeria’s reforms for economic stabilisation to enable transformation (RESET) development policy financing program (DPF) and $750 million for Nigeria’s accelerating resource mobilisation reforms (ARMOR) program-for-results (PforR).

In the programme appraisal document, the World Bank said the ARMOR programme contains revenue policy measures such as raising pro-health taxes on tobacco, and alcohol.

The Bretton Woods institution also said the programme contains the introduction of taxes on online betting and gambling, as well as new excise on telecommunication services.

Experts have however warned that these taxes would have severe consequences for investment and the operational viability of telecom companies.

According to them, higher taxes would hinder digitalization efforts, which are crucial for economic growth.

The proposed tax measures, according to the industry, are not only damaging to the telecom sector but also to the broader economy.

 

 


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EFCC, Flutterwave to Establish Cybercrime Centre for Security of Transactions

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Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and Flutterwave, unicorn payments technology company have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), to establish and a state-of-the-art Cybercrime Research Centre.

EFCC, Flutterwave to Establish Cybercrime Centre for Security of Transactions

Areas of focus of the centre include advanced fraud detection and prevention, policy development, as well as youth empowerment.

The fintech company with fortunes worth over $1bn headquartered in San Francisco with footprints in Nigeria and other African countries said the centre would also provide a “sustainable lifeline to youths across the country”.

To this effect, the Silicon Valley-based company signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the anti-graft agency in Abuja.

Ola Olukoyede, chairman, EFCC; Olugbenga Agboola, founder, Flutterwave; Christopher Gray, director of Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI); and other senior officials from both the EFCC and the FBI witnessed the signing of the MoU

Specifically, the MoU was signed by Mohammadu Hammajoda, secretary, EFCC and Agboolaof Flutterwave.

Olukoyede said, “This partnership marks a significant leap forward in our efforts to combat financial crimes and ensure a secure financial landscape for Nigerians. The Cybercrime Research Centre will significantly enhance our capabilities to prevent, detect, and prosecute financial crimes.”

On his part, Agboola said, “This initiative underscores our commitment to creating a fraud-free financial ecosystem and leading the charge in safeguarding transactions across Africa.

“We applaud the EFCC’s relentless efforts to combat internet fraud and other illicit activities in the financial sector.”

The Cybercrime Research Centre, to be established at the new EFCC Academy in Abuja, would serve as a hub for advanced research, training, and capacity building in the fight against financial crimes.

Areas of focus of the centre include advanced fraud detection and prevention, collaborative research and policy development, youth empowerment and capacity building, technological advancement and resource enablement, among other key areas.

“Advanced Fraud Detection and Prevention: Developing and implementing cutting-edge technologies to detect and prevent financial fraud. The centre will offer comprehensive training for law enforcement and industry professionals to combat modern financial crimes effectively.

“Collaborative Research and Policy Development: Engaging in joint research initiatives and policy formulation to enhance the understanding and regulation of financial crime. The centre will provide a platform for the exchange of ideas and best practices between the public and private sectors.

“Youth Empowerment and Capacity Building: Providing high-end training and research opportunities for 500 youths, equipping them with the skills needed to navigate and excel in the digital economy.

“Technological Advancement and Resource Enablement: Creating a repository of advanced tools, technologies, and resources to support financial crime investigations, including protocols for addressing emerging threats such as cryptocurrency-related crimes,” the statement concluded.

Birthed in 2016 by Agboola, fondly referred to as GB, Flutterwave, with its corporate headquarters in San Francisco and operational head office in Lagos State, grew within a short time, penetrating the African market with customisable payments applications through its unique Application Programming Interface.

 

 


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