I have made it a tradition to share the comments of my friends, followers and associates on my articles for two reasons. The first is to ventilate their opinions for continuous engagement. The second is to demonstrate that I appreciate every opinion, every comment.

Below are a number of thoughts on my article, “Nigeria: Gradually Enforcing Regulation” published on July 12th:

The publication is very insightful. Especially the way you have provided feedback to various stakeholders with CARE by providing clear examples. I do also agree that Nigeria is gradually enforcing regulation and noticed that the Centre of Excellence is taking the lead on this. However, I still see a lot of corrupt officers and corrupt activities amongst the regulatory agencies/officers.

We need to stop throwing our hands helplessly up in the air and justify our tardiness with the cliché ‘this is Nigeria’ and have a more focused engagement

– Comment by Charles Ibonye


Really what do we mean when we use the phrase ‘This is Nigeria”? Does it mean, this is Nigeria where anything goes? A Nigeria ‘where all that is wrong is rightly so’? If this indeed are our thoughts, then I fear more for our tomorrows.

A country filled with laws, yet brimming with lawlessness, out of ignorance & disregard. Corruption at every turn with little or no repercussions. A Nation ripe for a total and absolute ‘Change in mindset’ across all age brackets. A country where people lack respect for the individual in reality, but mouth it for eye service.

The article draws attention to the fact that Nigerians as a whole need to begin to take more ownership of the direction we are headed. We should be strategic enough to systematically replicate knowledge, knowledge transfer should be a watch word to aid in National intellectual development, so we can begin to stand as peers with Global players.

It gives me thoughts of how a possible enforcement process could be simplified thus…People should be educated/informed on this, so there would be no excuse for ignorance; Laws/Regulators/Enforcers/Penalties/Enforcers. So discipline to recognize the laws, knowledge of the regulators, understand there are enforcers, appreciate the gravity of the penalties and acknowledge that enforcers mean business at both stages. You will be dealt with at a certain stage for defaulting.

Lastly, Regulators and Enforcers should be adequatly equipped to make the Laws stand in the first place..therein lies the break in the chain process, hence the free flow of corruption and decadence

-Comment by Anthonia Ehanmo

I anchored the Digital Economy and Legal Resolution’ seminar for Lagos State officials

I anchored the Digital Economy and Legal Resolution’ seminar for Lagos State officials

1.       who is making the rules and why are they making them?

 Are they making these rules to be tyrants or for the development or growth of the community? Does the person making the rules have enough information or capacity to make them or he is just copying from a developed world

 2. which is faster the rules or Technology?

Most of the time when we make these rules, there is no technology or the application of it to drive the rule or its enforcement. Don’t jump the Red light! Don’t drive one way! Register your cars! Pay your taxes! Insure your cars! And many more.  And there are no cameras, no Monitoring centres, nothing to prove the guy’s credentials are valid, nothing to prove the guy is he who he says he is and the likes.

 3. Why is it so difficult to follow the rules?

 The answer is simple, there are mostly no consequences for breaking the rules. There is mostly no way to prove expressly that the rules were broken. (“He who asserts must prove”….Latin Law). But since we all know that in most cases there is no way the government is going to prove it, talk less of punishing us…there is wide gap of escape route we can the explore.

-Comment by Adetoyese Oyerinde

Technology disrupters

Technology disrupters

The article is insightful and should be granted enough publicity until all relevant people get it. I also listened to the interview you granted CNBC, and you nailed it! (Though, it looked like the air conditioner in the room wasn’t working properly) J. This is the leadership that the industry requires to turn things around.
As you have highlighted, our problem in Nigeria is not the lack of necessary laws and policies, but proper implementation and enforcement. This is an institutional problem that permeates all circles of government. Most often, MDAs respond to the body language of the leadership in power instead of allowing a functional system to run. This could only explain the recent awaken of EFCC, ICPC and NCC.
Specifically on NOTAP, NOTAP Act Cap. N62 LFN 2004 detailed some of its functions as the development of the negotiation skills of Nigerians with a view to ensuring the acquirement of the best contractual terms and conditions by Nigerian parties entering into any contract or agreement for the transfer of foreign technology; the provision of a more efficient process for the adaptation of imported technology; and encouragement of a more efficient process for the identification and selection of foreign technology and more importantly.  However, much attention is not paid to the achievement/or otherwise of the policy because it is habitually taken for granted that a law must be implemented and the desired goal achieved once government enacts it. The sizeable gap between the policy enactment and its implementation (enforcement) has extended policy failures and lawlessness in Nigeria. When there are laws, there should be order. When there are infractions, there must be consequences!
In my opinion, there is no robust process for implementation and continuous monitoring, which is why all agencies of government are not working in collaboration and synchronization. For instance, the Office for Nigerian Content (ONC),  a development-focused Special Purpose Vehicle of the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA),  was set up to implement the Guidelines for a Nigerian Content Development Program and to champion the growth and development of Nigerian content in ICT. They should also be interested in contract negotiation with OEM since one of its strategic goals is to support technology transfer, indigenous participation and the survival of local players in the sector.  Part of the law states that foreign OEM should “maintain at least 50% local content by value either directly or through outsourcing to local manufacturers engaged in any segment of the product value chain. There will be a time frame of 3 years for achieving the 50% local content”. This important body should be able to work together with NOTAP to ensure the local players are adequately protected as per the guidelines in all cases.
It is important that particular attention is given to both the manpower and financial resources which will be needed to implement the policy. There must be effective communication between the target beneficiaries and the implementers of policy programmes. There must also be proper channel for reporting breaches, and all infractions should be dealt with fairly and consistently. In addition, national assembly need to play their supervisory role by ensuring that relevant agencies do the work which they were set up to do.

– Comment by Rasheed Salawu

Watch-out for the concluding part next week.