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DO YOU LOVE PALM OIL OR TECHNOLOGY?

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Red tablet in the left palm blue pill in his right hand
  • You can’t but love the way tech makes the red oil more useful to you while protecting the environment

When we deeply think about how technology helps us and the world at large, (when we deeply think about it and not like how we think about liking our favourite celebrity’s new post on Twitter before reading it; “that’s even if we read them”), what probably comes to mind is that technology helps us connect with friends and family online and “Oh yes! Transportation! Technology also takes us to these friends and family.” If we break into another level of deeper thinking, we might just begin to realise how it doesn’t just bring us closer to things, but how it helps to bring the essential things of life closer to us.

When people think about palm kernel oil (commonly known as just palm oil), they mostly think about it as a common cooking ingredient, but palm oil is also used in the creation of oleochemicals, which include lubricants, cosmetics, and even margarine. In the Nigerian palm oil scene, the product became scarce among the manufacturers that really needed it because of an increase in demand and the unimproved process of making it until recently. What changed? The inefficient manufacturing of palm oil. What caused the change? You guessed it, Technology!

Releaf, an indigenous firm, is brilliantly making use of technology to accelerate the production of palm oil to solve the problem for manufacturers who pay a pricey amount for palm oil in the making of the cosmetics you need, or the margarine used in making some of the pastries you love. The company has a “smart facility” in Akwa Ibom state that employs a variety of algorithms and computers to produce palm oil as much as needed. Since the company started its “tech for good initiative”, the probability that your favourite cosmetics or margarine brand will have a price fluctuation is being reduced. So, when you next think deeply about how technology helps you and the world at large, we hope that you’ll be eating your favourite pastry.

To read more on the various tech for good initiatives and how they are impacting Nigerian lives, click on the link below to read the TTSWG publication.https://www.ttswg.org/resources/tech-for-good-initiatives-in-nigeria/

YOU REALLY NEED TO KNOW HOW THE EMISSIONS FROM E-WASTE AFFECT YOUR HEALTH

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Plastics recycling facility MBA Polymers in Kematen, Austria is where plastics from electronics are recycled in a sophisticated manner for reuse in injection and intrusion molding. In the laboratory each load is sampled and amount of plastic, wood, metals, etc. is determined. Angela Nini separates a sample, in background are Wilhelm Stoger and Nicole Wieser. Plastics must be recycled if possible in the EU and incinerated if it is not possible to recycle.
  • We might just be breathing fine now, but for how long?

How much poor health is caused by ICT emissions, and how much of these ICT emissions can the immune system tolerate? And why should you even care?

The Agbogbloshie market in Accra, Ghana, is a good example of this problem. For over ten years, Agbogbloshie has accepted recycling electronic waste from Europe, North America, and Asia. It has now become one of the world’s most polluted informal e-waste recycling sites. According to the WHO, a child who eats just one chicken egg from Agbogbloshie will absorb 220 times the European Food Safety Authority’s daily limit for intake of chlorinated dioxins (big grammar for chemical compounds that are found in polluted environments and contaminate food).

Do we have such a problem in Nigeria? You guessed right. A whopping 80% of e-waste from developed countries is illegally exported to low-income countries like Nigeria, where labour costs and disposal are cheap, and laws are not effectively enforced.

ICT waste or e-waste contains elements like lead, zinc, and mercury, which can cause danger to life. Unfortunately, Nigeria does not yet practise proper waste disposal management of ICT products, and so for people that live around dump sites or areas where the waste leads to pollution, they may be at a greater risk of having cancer.

In Nigeria, many electronic markets and informal dumpsites are located near or in residential areas. This allows children and women to be exposed to ICT emissions. The e-waste is set ablaze, releasing toxic fumes into the air and contaminating underground drinking water.

The WHO estimates Nigeria generated N64.2 billion worth of ICT waste in 2019 and ranks second in Africa after Egypt.

ICT waste or e-waste contains elements like lead, zinc, and mercury, which can cause danger to life when the toxic materials in these heavy metals are released into the soil, air, or underground water. The result will be a devastating disease outbreak in crops, livestock, and humans. Unfortunately, Nigeria does not yet practise proper waste disposal management of ICT products. So, people that live around dump sites or areas where the waste leads to pollution, may be at a greater risk of having cancer.

This isn’t going to be a scary read, at least not beyond this point, because the Telecommunication and Technology Sustainability Working Group (TTSWG), an initiative driven by the need for sustainability practices in the tech sector, has done all the research on the above questions and has given more than enough options to explore to ensure your safety.

In the previous quarter of the year, the group released a publication titled “Managing ICT Emissions and Environmental Pollution in Nigeria: A Look at Best Practices.

The publication was released after TTSWG carried out descriptive research to understand how much pollution is being caused by ICT (Information Communication Technology) in Nigeria due to the previous lack of homogenous data. TTSWG is a Nigerian pro-tech non-governmental organisation that advocates for sustainable development, growth, and best practices in Nigerian telecommunications and technology.

ICT is a broad acronym that covers the scope of several fields related to information technology, which shelters several innovations and technologies under telecommunications, such as computers, wireless communication, and telephone lines.

The publication reveals that in Nigeria, there is an ever-growing consumption of ICT products such as computers, phones, and televisions. The improper disposal of these products after the end of their life cycle will lead to an environmental problem called “electronic waste,” which causes pollution.

We know that, at this point, everything screams cancer, but it is not just cancer that one should be worried about. Medical and scientific experts claim that other critical health challenges come with exposure to ICT pollution. Humans can suffer damage to the nervous system, blood, and respiratory organs from contacting these dangerous substances (add skin disorders to that list).

We know it isn’t fair that the electronic devices we buy with our hard-earned money ( or money gotten from other people’s sweat ) should cause so much harm after usage. The problem is that too many toxic materials are being used to make the electronic devices we use. For instance, a cell phone contains toxic materials such as mercury, beryllium, and lead. In touchscreen cell phones, indium oxide and tin oxide are used in a clear film on the screen to conduct electricity for you to be able to use the screen as a touchscreen (don’t worry about the big science jargon, we also have no clue what they really are, but we know they are facts).

As you read all these alarming facts, you might ask yourself, “Why do people let this pollution happen, and why doesn’t it make the news?” It does make the news (you are probably consuming too much TikTok). Still, it is rarely regarded as a major environmental problem because most consumers believe that their actions or participation in discussing ICT pollution will have a minor impact on causing a significant change (oh ok, it’s not because you consume too much TikTok, sorry). Another reason would be that many people are ignorant of the problem.

WHAT CAN YOU DO?

In that publication, TTSWG made a list of several novel solutions in which the government, tech industries, manufacturers, and consumers can participate. One of these solutions includes recycling digital products, which involves re-evaluating the need for an extra gadget, buying refurbished products, and creating a sustainable e-waste recycling program.

Other solutions include supporting better e-waste legislation and raising ICT footprint awareness, amongst many others.

The future of sustainability in the Nigerian industry might still be very far from perfect, but the research and findings from TTSWG are shedding some light on the path we should all follow. You should take the time to read the publication on managing ICT emissions and environmental pollution in Nigeria by TTSWG because maybe you’re breathing simply fine now, but for how long?

By Epa Stevens

Click the link below to read the publication
https://www.ttswg.org/resources/managing-ict-emissions-and-environment-pollution-in-nigeria

SystemSpecs Launches Fundraising Platform, FundACause, to Facilitate Donations in Nigeria, others

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LAGOS, NIGERIA. 23 August 2022: SystemSpecs Technology, a subsidiary of SystemSpecs, Africa’s software technology powerhouse, has launched FundACause a fundraising solution for individuals, Non-Government Organisations (NGOs), religious organisations, and other groups who desire to raise funds from donors within and outside Nigeria, for causes that are important to them, in a transparent and secure manner.

Developed to manage donation-based fundraising, FundACause—available at fundacause.net—offers fundraisers immense ease to generate funds, create awareness, track campaigns online and in real-time, share donation progress with donors, enjoy prompt funds settlement, and achieve their goals.

Donors, from within and outside Nigeria, can easily connect with any campaign that aligns with them, and donate through multiple payment options available on the platform.

“With a focus on non-investment fundraising, FundACause is the go-to platform for philanthropic individuals and organisations that seek to promote causes that touch lives. Fundraisers can set up their campaigns securely on any cause – be it medical, education, political, social or community causes and others; tell a story about their cause with a picture or video; set a campaign target; create awareness for campaigns and share the unique campaign link via email and preferred social media platforms – Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp, Telegram and LinkedIn. Also, a white-labelled version can be embedded in the fundraiser’s website.

“Donors from within and outside Nigeria can view different campaigns and make donations using any of the multiple channels available. Fundraisers have full visibility over the campaign performance. They can also communicate with donors whilst keeping them abreast of the donation progress,” said Demola Igbalajobi, Managing Director, SystemSpecs Technology.

Speaking further on the need for a fundraising platform like FundACause, Igbalajobi said:  “In a society like ours where a lot more still needs to be achieved through social cooperation, FundACause will foster a community that thrives on impactful living, driving the much-needed positive change in society through fundraising activities and social interventions of well-meaning individuals and groups who strive for overall societal good and advancement,” Igbalajobi added.

FundACause was developed by SystemSpecs Technology, a subsidiary of SystemSpecs – Africa’s flagship technology services and solutions provider, which delivers diverse innovative solutions including human resources, payments, and fundraising to a variety of users segments in Nigeria and across the African continent. SystemSpecs is also the owner of Remita, Nigeria’s leading financial technology solution, and HumanManager, the foremost human resources and payroll solution for businesses of any size in Africa.

TTSWG reiterates commitment to collaboration among Telecommunication and TECH stakeholders

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As part of its efforts to drive collaboration and resilience among stakeholders in the telecommunications and technology sector, the Telecommunications and Technology Sustainability Working Group (TTSWG) recently hosted its 2021 webinar to address various national issues that ensure the implementation of  sustainable business practices that benefit the sector and the country.

The event brought together key stakeholders and personalities in telecommunications, government, legal, the private sectors, and the media to discuss industry challenges and ways to achieve sustainable development. The webinar, hosted for the first time in 2021, will also foster partnerships between governments, the commercial sector, and civil society for a successful sustainable development strategy.

Based on the theme “Collaboration for Resilient ICT Sector”, panellists discussed opportunities to be derived from strategic partnerships, policy formulation/advocacy, events, and programmes. 

Speaking on the impact of TTSWG while making a Business case for sustainability, Bekeme Masade-Olowola, Chief Executive, CSR-in-Action said: “There is growing interest in sustainability around the world. This means more interest in investors as well because within sustainability are the ESG principles which look at how organisations engage their employees, communities, government, businesses and the environment. Therein lies the intrinsic value of sustainability. The ICT sector has presented itself as forward-thinking and TTSWG is propelling its effectiveness’’. Panellists at the webinar included Mr Chris Uwaje, Chair, Mobile Software Solutions Limited; ‘DeRemi Atanda, Executive Director, SystemSpecs; Eno Udoma-Eniang, Chairman, Legal and Regulatory Committee, Association of Licensed Telecoms Operators of Nigeria (ALTON); and Dr (Mrs) Wunmi Hassan, President/CEO, High-Tech Centre for Women and Youth in Nigeria.

In her remarks, Eno Udoma-Eniang spoke on the impact the ICT sector has had on the growth of other sectors and the need to do more through collaboration. 

“CT providers need to revolve, reinvent, and reposition to move from being traditional to basic innovative providers. There are already a few partnerships that push digital and virtual solutions. We have made growth in various sectors including telemedicine, food sustainability, Agrotech and payment solutions. There is more we can do with collaboration especially in areas such as the establishment of smart cities and rural telephony. Operators should know that the sector is stronger and must collaborate for sustainability’’. She said

Also speaking on government and private sector collaboration, ‘DeRemi Atanda stated that governance has been challenged during the pandemic hence the need to collaborate with the ICT sector to thrive. He emphasized the importance of turning conversations into action and the role TTSWG is playing to ensure development through coopetition. The dimension of partnerships is taking the government on a platform of growth and this provides an opportunity for the private sector to thriveThis collaboration will further enhance the achievement of sustainability goals, interconnectedness with policy conversations, advocacy and solutions

The TTSWG seeks to address various national issues by mobilising human and material capital available to stakeholders in the focus sector to ensure sustainable practices that benefit the sector and the country. 

Providing insight for a way forward in the ICT industry, Mr Chris Uwaje spoke on the importance to refocus our policy and strategy. The new economy requires that there is awareness of the impact of ICT. He added that Government should work with private sectors to ensure collaboration while prescribing a digital museum where young people can learn.   

The TTSWG is a collaborative effort aimed at yielding joint action among key telecommunications and technology stakeholders through various strategic partnerships, policy formulation/advocacy, events and programmes. Some members of the TTSWG include MTN Nigeria, IHS Towers, Main One, Airtel, National Communications Commission (NCC), ALTON and NITDA.

Toyin Kappo-Kolawole of Coconut Empire – Making Lemonades out of Lemon

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Delicious coconuts with leaves, isolated on white background

Toyin Kappo-Kolawole is someone who made lemonades out of the lemons that life handed her. Though lemonade is not popular in this part of the world, she did make a lot of wonderful things out of coconuts. Her discussion with the host of the Good Citizen Show proved that there is always an opportunity to make something amazing from the little things around us. Again, like in our previous discussion, delayed gratification was a key aspect of the discussion and a principle a lot of people need to adopt in their careers and lifestyle.

Ms Kappo-Kolawole started her career by hawking coconuts and making coconut meals from raw coconuts, but today, she has made an empire out of it. She is a small business entrepreneur but she has also built a sustainable enterprise from her products by using resources that will always be needed and available for use. She is doing enough to support herself and her family and hasn’t had to succumb to any of society’s vices to survive so far. She is a stellar example of the type of good citizen that needs to come from the discussions on the radio show.

Small and medium scale enterprises are Nigeria’s largest employers of labour; they are responsible for creating up to 84% of all jobs in the country. This means starting up a small or medium-scale enterprise like coconut manufacturing would do a great number of people a big favour. Coconut oil is an amazing health resource; it is a staple in healthy diets all around the world. The host met Ms Kappo-Kolawole through a friend who shared her contact, in a quest for a coconut dealer that will provide coconut oil to use in her meals. On her first encounter with the guest, the host said Ms Kappo-Kolawole sent the requested products without collecting her fee upfront. Such an act is rare in the present-day economy in Nigeria.

Ms Kappo-Kolawole replied that it is in her character to let her products speak first for her as this sets the tone for her entire business. It was a usual practice in the past to send people products, trusting that they will pay, because people were bound by their word. These days, it is really rare to come across such people with integrity from either buyer or seller’s point of view.

Growing up in the Badagry area of Lagos state, coconuts were a staple natural resource. From consumption and use for skin care in her childhood, the guest learned how to make hot-pressed coconut. In 2018 after an unsuccessful job hunt, she found she could turn her coconut making skill into a sustainable career path. The first opportunity to use her skill presented itself when she found she could use coconuts to heal a person with high blood pressure.

From there, she started making more discoveries from coconuts. She found that she could make more litres of coconut oil for a lot cheaper than what was available in the market. She started marketing her products in her neighbourhood and among her church members. As the business began to grow, she moved from Igando to the Isolo area of Lagos state. She hired more staff and bought more coconut produce. She eventually found a masterclass online to her develop her skills in making coconut produce, but it was too costly at that time.

She was able to crowdfund to pay for half of her masterclass tuition fees and promised to pay the rest before the end of the masterclass. One day, a customer requested 100 litres of both cold-pressed and hot-pressed coconut oil. This was a huge leap from the 1 litre of coconut oil she was producing in the past. This customer of hers paid her in half to make the coconut produce with the intent to complete the payment after the job was finished. This payment was what enabled her to get the rest of the tuition fees to make up for her masterclass. That was her breakthrough.

She never would have been able to get that breakthrough if she didn’t start and relied on excuses that most people rely on to stop themselves from taking the next step. She took her first step and invested in herself and it was amid that investment that she got a breakthrough. Belief in a person’s business, according to her, is the first step in building a successful business venture.

Today her business comprises a range of coconut products like coconut poundo, coconut flour, coconut oil (hot-pressed and cold-pressed) and coconut candy. This business is an oasis in Lagos where it is difficult to find good quality coconut oil. The business name came from her desire to have something that would always take her back to her roots. The name, therefore, came from the word home- “DeCribbshome”. It also speaks of her heritage as well. The major impetus behind her growth is credited to God, her husband, some members of her family who invested in her and her customer referrals. Integrity and hard work have also gotten her very far.

She advised anyone who was thinking of starting a business in Nigeria to start small and be hardworking. Humility and perseverance were also necessary ingredients for success. Humility makes a huge difference in customer relations because everyone plays a critical role no matter how inconsequential their job description seems. She concluded by saying nothing good in life comes easy so there’s always a need to stay true to who you are and what you do.

De Cribbs coconut can be gotten on WhatsApp on 08033409333.

Listen to the full interview here.


Ibrahim Bakare – The “Lover Boy” Who Persevered (Good Citizen Series)

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The entrepreneurship series on The Good Citizen Show kicked off in May with the first guest, Ibrahim Bakare. He is the CEO and nail tutor of Sugar Coat Tips nail salon. He is a prime example of a young man who still believes and practices the virtue of delayed gratification amid peers who are occupied with various “get rich quick” schemes. In his words, “With the right ethics, you can still make it in life.”

He runs the nail salon with his brother and a friend, which is an anomaly in such a female-dominated field. He grew up in an environment where gender roles were not too stringent. House chores, cooking and cleaning were handled by everyone. When asked how his upbringing impacted his business and helped him grow to the point he is now, he said his father was a major caregiver in the home. He said his father didn’t let the fact that there was no mum in the house get in the way of being a nurturer.

Hard work and consistency were key in starting up his business and getting customers. Building on his good reputation and customer referrals, without the aid of Instagram ads, his business was able to grow organically. Though he struggled to get to that point, he still took it upon himself to find little pleasures in life.

It was difficult for him to not fall under peer pressure and venture into illegal business opportunities. He held on to the virtue of delayed gratification and the belief that he was going to succeed in what he was doing eventually. Telling the story of a woman who offered to teach him the 419 (fraudulent) business of 419, he was able to overcome the temptation by holding on to his principles.

He got the nickname “lover boy” for being “too soft” and not resorting to vices. He said he believed in things that last forever. He still desired to be comfortable and rich but he was willing to wait for however long it took to preserve his peace of mind. He was all about imparting excellence.

He defined what success meant to him through some key role models of his. He started the business with his mentor, Mrs Yetunde Olowo who saw him through the business.

In the business, his brothers that were also his business partners were more of his accountability partners than anything else. Through the business, he was able to train himself through Yaba College of Technology (Yabatec), and his brothers were able to get married and have kids.

He advised listeners on the show to stay true to their principles because hard work pays. No one should try to cut corners to get to where they want to be in life.

Listen to the full interview here.

Laughter, Funfair as The Elevation Church, Ikoyi Hosts Maiden International Food and Arts Festival (Photos)

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he International Food and Arts Festival (IFAF), an initiative of The Elevation Church Ikoyi Expression, took place recently at Strong Tower Hall, 40 Alfred Rewane Road, Ikoyi, Lagos, Nigeria. The IFAF is aimed at recognizing and celebrating the uniqueness and beauty of the culture of different citizens, not indigenous to Nigeria yet significant to our economic development. This was designed with the objective of rallying together expats in the Church to provide a platform that facilitates interaction with them and accelerate their assimilation into the church.  

The International Food and Arts Festival IFAF) is designed to showcase and celebrate the food, culture, fashion and arts of different countries especially those that are predominant in TEC Ikoyi’s target demography. It’s our own twist of the Taste of our Tribe Eater funfair yearly event of The Elevation Church, and it’s targeted at the expatriate community.

The fair will be used to drive diversity and inclusion by providing opportunities for fellowship, cultural appreciation within a relaxed atmosphere. This maiden IFAF event is scheduled for May 2Ist, 2022 at the Strong Tower Hall, 40 Alfred Rewane Road, Ikoyi event centre from 11am

The countries of focus this year include France, South Africa, China, Ghana, Zimbabwe, Lebanon, Jamaica, India, Trinidad & Tobago.

Below are photos from the event:

L-R : Director of Global Ministry The Elevation Church, Pastor Debo Omotunde; Assistant Director Lagos Creative Art Ministry of Tourism, Mrs. Qudri Adebowale; Sawati Kumas Kastuni of The Indian Embassy Lagos; Resident Pastor of The Elevation Church Ikoyi and Host, IFAF, Pastor Kola Fayemi; Co-Lead Pastor of The Elevation Church, Pastor Bola Akinlabi; Director of Creative Art , Ministry of Art and Tourism Lagos , Idowu Johnson; and representative of the Indian Embassy Lagos, Provein Kumas
L-R : Director of Global Ministry, The Elevation Church (TEC), Pastor Debo Omotunde; Head of Membership, TEC, Teni Stuffman; Representative of Austrian Consulate, Odin Bluecode; Co-Lead Pastor of TEC, Pastor Bola Akinlabi; Resident Pastor of TEC Ikoyi and Host, IFAF, Pastor Kola Fayemi; Representative of French Embassy, Yann Gilbert; and Head of Ministry, TEC Ikoyi, Timi Koleolu
L-R : Head of Assimilation, The Elevation Church (TEC), Funmilayo Falola; French Consulate representative, Yann Gilbert; Co-Lead Pastor of TEC, Bola Akinlabi; Resident Pastor of TEC, Ikoyi, Kola Fayemi; and Head of Ministry, TEC, Timi Koleolu
L-R : Co-Lead Pastor of The Elevation Church, Pastor Bola Akinlabi, Sawati Kumas Kastuni of The Indian Embassy Lagos, Ghana Consulate General, Samata Gifty Bukari, Saipranaui Kastuni of The Indian Embassy Lagos, Director of Global Ministry The Elevation Church,Pastor Debo Omotunde

Activist alleges foul play in Eti-Osa PDP Rep primaries

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A volunteer for one of the aspirants for the House of Representatives, have alleged attempts to compromise the PDP Re-run Primary Elections for the Eti – Osa Federal Constituency House of Representatives position.

He alleged that some officials are compromising the process to write results and declare their preferred candidate winner, against the proper run of play, which is to conduct a free and fair election.

Addressing journalists on Monday morning, Rex Anighoro, a renowned Civil Society leader and activist who is a Sam Aiboni Jnr volunteer said: “As at this morning, Monday 6th June, the Returning Officer, Sanni Nana is still in Abuja, and one of the contestants is allegedly with party officials in Marriott Hotel, Ikeja instead of the venue of the Primaries at the PDP Secretariat.

“Hon Sam Aiboni Jnr, the other contestant for the Eti – Osa Federal Constituency House of Representatives position on the platform of the PDP has been at the Venue, No 17 Murphy Adetoro Alfa Beach Road since 7am waiting for the elections to be held while the other has not shown up since morning.

“This is therefore a clarion call on all to ensure that the right thing is done, and the primary elections are fairly conducted, as anything outside of this will be vehemently resisted.

“Conduct the Elections, and not write the results to favor a candidate” He concluded

Recall that a re-run for the ticket was fixed for Monday June 6 following irregularities from that which was conducted earlier.

How SystemSpecs Lead Tech’s Transformation of Accounting and Finance in Nigeria

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By Chidi Alabi

`As the world progresses in the digital transformation era, technology is playing an increasingly dominant role in many professions, revolutionizing the mode of operations in these areas to improve efficiency, save costs and simplify processes.

One of the notable fields that is being increasingly influenced by technology is the accounting and finance industry, which is being transformed through innovations in automation, cloud-based services, artificial intelligence and unprecedented access to data. Indeed, technology in accounting and financial planning has transformed the sector with newer and advanced software, and its ability to ensure accuracy and reduce errors, which helps businesses avoid tax penalties and other issues. Furthermore, it is now much easier to organise audits in a highly efficient manner.

In Nigeria, the rising impact of technology on accounting processes is illustrated in the emergence of innovative financial management systems such as the federal government’s Treasury Single Account (TSA) and the rise of the booming fintech sector which has provided thousands of jobs for Nigerians and helped millions of organisations and individuals process financial transactions more efficiently.

Today, Nigeria has become the leading fintech hub in Africa with several products providing innovative solutions servicing millions of people in diverse sectors. These products include Paystack, Flutterwave, Remita and Quickteller facilitating payment, Piggyvest, Carbon and Palmpay facilitating lending and investment, and Paylink and Opay facilitating remittance amongst several others. To stimulate efficiency and fast track business growth in a tough, highly competitive, and rapidly changing market, organisations in Nigeria need to maximize the leverage provided by fintech and other digital technology solutions.

Last month, the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (ICAN) also underlined this increased collaboration when the Institute’s 57th president, Mrs. Comfort Eyitayo, paid a courtesy visit to the headquarters of African technology giant, SystemSpecs, as a major stakeholder of the prestigious accounting institute. One of the oldest technology firms in Nigeria and a pioneer of the fintech revolution, SystemSpecs was founded in 1992 by a former banker, John Obaro. It is known for its innovative revolutionary products in financial technology, human capital management and ecommerce. Some of the company’s popular solutions include HumanManager, Paylink, and Remita which has already become a household name.

Congratulating the company on its ‘Three Decades of Innovation and Impact’, the ICAN boss said it is noteworthy that SystemSpecs has operated for three decades while developing topnotch human capital and financial management software for the Nigerian and African economies.

With its flagship products, Remita and HumanManager, SystemSpecs is one of the firms revolutionizing financial planning and management in Nigeria. For instance, HumanManager is an all-in-one solution that takes care of payroll, reporting, staff record, performance, and human capital management needs for organizations across Africa whilst Remita has helped thousands of individuals, corporate organizations and governments organise their finances more efficiently with its aggregated interface enabling people to access all their bank accounts vis one dashboard. Remita has also acquired a reputation as a national product with its adoption as the technology powering the TSA.

The TSA is an essential public finance management reform agenda recommended by the World Bank to ensure proper oversight of government cash flows and reduce the cost of keeping public money in several commercial banks. Like several other countries around the world, it was embraced by the Nigerian government to facilitate a unified structure of government bank account for all public sector transactions. Along the line, it has also become a major instrument of campaign for zero tolerance for corruption.

The TSA has been so successful that over N45 billion in interest rates is currently being saved by government on a monthly basis, according to the Minister of Finance, Zainab Ahmed. TSA has allowed, for the first time, visibility of the total quantity of government funds at any point in time. This has Increased transparency in government processes and brought governance closer to the average citizen.

Besides the joint federal government accounts, the TSA has also transformed financial management for many government agencies through the maximisation of technology. A very good case is the Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB). The exam body’s increasing compliance with strict government financial policies, such as the Treasury Single Account (TSA) has made it possible for it to increase revenue and reduce prices, making its examinations more accessible to millions of indigent students.

While speaking at a colloquium in May 2018, JAMB’s Registrar, Prof Ishaq Oloyede, had said the examination body’s yearly remittances before 2017 was a meagre N52 million but had now increased to N7.8 billion under his administration.

As the world progresses in the digital transformation era, technology is playing an increasingly dominant role in many professions, revolutionizing the mode of operations in these areas to improve efficiency, save costs and simplify processes.

One of the notable fields that is being increasingly influenced by technology is the accounting and finance industry, which is being transformed through innovations in automation, cloud-based services, artificial intelligence and unprecedented access to data. Indeed, technology in accounting and financial planning has transformed the sector with newer and advanced software, and its ability to ensure accuracy and reduce errors, which helps businesses avoid tax penalties and other issues. Furthermore, it is now much easier to organise audits in a highly efficient manner.

In Nigeria, the rising impact of technology on accounting processes is illustrated in the emergence of innovative financial management systems such as the federal government’s Treasury Single Account (TSA) and the rise of the booming fintech sector which has provided thousands of jobs for Nigerians and helped millions of organisations and individuals process financial transactions more efficiently.

Today, Nigeria has become the leading fintech hub in Africa with several products providing innovative solutions servicing millions of people in diverse sectors. These products include Paystack, Flutterwave, Remita and Quickteller facilitating payment, Piggyvest, Carbon and Palmpay facilitating lending and investment, and Paylink and Opay facilitating remittance amongst several others. To stimulate efficiency and fast track business growth in a tough, highly competitive, and rapidly changing market, organisations in Nigeria need to maximize the leverage provided by fintech and other digital technology solutions.

Last month, the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (ICAN) also underlined this increased collaboration when the Institute’s 57th president, Mrs. Comfort Eyitayo, paid a courtesy visit to the headquarters of African technology giant, SystemSpecs, as a major stakeholder of the prestigious accounting institute. One of the oldest technology firms in Nigeria and a pioneer of the fintech revolution, SystemSpecs was founded in 1992 by a former banker, John Obaro. It is known for its innovative revolutionary products in financial technology, human capital management and ecommerce. Some of the company’s popular solutions include HumanManager, Paylink, and Remita which has already become a household name.

Congratulating the company on its ‘Three Decades of Innovation and Impact’, the ICAN boss said it is noteworthy that SystemSpecs has operated for three decades while developing topnotch human capital and financial management software for the Nigerian and African economies.

With its flagship products, Remita and HumanManager, SystemSpecs is one of the firms revolutionizing financial planning and management in Nigeria. For instance, HumanManager is an all-in-one solution that takes care of payroll, reporting, staff record, performance, and human capital management needs for organizations across Africa whilst Remita has helped thousands of individuals, corporate organizations and governments organise their finances more efficiently with its aggregated interface enabling people to access all their bank accounts vis one dashboard. Remita has also acquired a reputation as a national product with its adoption as the technology powering the TSA.

The TSA is an essential public finance management reform agenda recommended by the World Bank to ensure proper oversight of government cash flows and reduce the cost of keeping public money in several commercial banks. Like several other countries around the world, it was embraced by the Nigerian government to facilitate a unified structure of government bank account for all public sector transactions. Along the line, it has also become a major instrument of campaign for zero tolerance for corruption.

The TSA has been so successful that over N45 billion in interest rates is currently being saved by government on a monthly basis, according to the Minister of Finance, Zainab Ahmed. TSA has allowed, for the first time, visibility of the total quantity of government funds at any point in time. This has Increased transparency in government processes and brought governance closer to the average citizen.

Besides the joint federal government accounts, the TSA has also transformed financial management for many government agencies through the maximisation of technology. A very good case is the Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB). The exam body’s increasing compliance with strict government financial policies, such as the Treasury Single Account (TSA) has made it possible for it to increase revenue and reduce prices, making its examinations more accessible to millions of indigent students.

While speaking at a colloquium in May 2018, JAMB’s Registrar, Prof Ishaq Oloyede, had said the examination body’s yearly remittances before 2017 was a meagre N52 million but had now increased to N7.8 billion under his administration.

Tech Giant, SystemSpecs, Extends Children’s Day Essay Competition Deadline

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SystemSpecs, Africa’s leading financial, human resources and e-commerce software technology giant, has extended the deadline for submission of entries for the 2022 Children’s Day Essay Competition till April 29, 2022.

According to Oluwasegun Adesanya, Group Head, Corporate Services, SystemSpecs, the extension is in response to the call by many participants, parents, proprietors of schools and other stakeholders from across the country who claim the second term holidays and overlapping activities have challenged the adequate supervision and coordination of entries’ submission.

Existing in two categories – Junior (age 9-12 years) and Senior (age 13-16 years), the Competition is open to primary and secondary school students who are to write on the 2022 topic, “Improving the Quality of Education in Nigeria through Technology.” All entries are to be submitted through the competition portal, www.systemspecs.com.ng/2022essay. Only submissions made through this portal are valid.

Entries into the junior category should not exceed 1,000 words, while the senior category should not exceed 1,500 words. Essays must reflect participants’ original ideas, devoid of plagiarism, written in English and endorsed by an accredited school official, parent, or legal guardian.

According to Adesanya, “the school that produces the most number of top winning entries in the junior and senior categories would be rewarded with 10 and 20 high-capacity personal computers, respectively, aside from other benefits.”

The top 3 individual winners in both categories will win high capacity laptops, topnotch headphones, free uLesson coding certificate courses, monthly 40 gigabyte Internet data for 1 year, travel suitcases, unique keepsake hoodies, school bags and much more. They will also gain automatic admission to the SystemSpecs National Summer Coding Camp.

The uLesson Coding Certificate Courses for the 3 top winners in each category are the product of a recent collaboration between SystemSpecs and uLesson Coding School, a frontline ed-tech startup that provides high quality, affordable and accessible online coding classes. “uLesson Coding School, in addition to other prizes, will not only equip participants with hands-on relevant technology skills but also help to unleash their creative minds,” Adesanya added.

In recognition of SystemSpecs’ 30th anniversary celebration, there shall be 30 honour roll awardees in 2022 against 20 in prior years. Honour roll awardees are essay winners whose scores are in the very top bracket among participants.

In its third year, the Competition aims to provide Nigerian children with an opportunity to contribute to addressing national issues through technology-led thinking and initiatives.

Some winners of the past editions include Onuoha-Okoro N. David of St Anthony Grammar School (Private), Esure, Ijebu Imushin, Ogun state; Kalu Derrick Ugochukwu of Fosla Academy, Karshi, Abuja; Chetachi Best Mbalu of Lagooz College, Iyana Ipaja, Lagos; and Uchenna Rita Ohiaeri of Queensland Academy, Okota, Lagos for the junior and senior categories of the 2020 and 2021 competitions respectfully.

The organiser of the Competition, SystemSpecs, is a 30-year-old pioneer in financial and human capital technology solutions and services developed in Nigeria for the rest of Africa. The firm recently spun off its operations into two subsidiaries – Remita Payment Services Limited (RPSL) and SystemSpecs Technology Services Limited (STSL).

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