Computer professionals have called on the Federal Government to lead Nigeria’s journey towards the realisation of the Fourth Industrial revolution, otherwise called, Industry 4.0.
Under the aegis of the Nigeria Computer Society (NCS), the umbrella body of all information and technology (IT) professionals, interest groups and stakeholders in the country, noted that the realisation of the fourth industrial revolution hinges on government providing the enabling environment for the private sector to latch on.
The President of NCS, Prof. Adesina Sodiya, during a Zoom meeting with journalists in Lagos, on Monday, said the Industry 4.0 holds key to many development for Nigeria, but they will not come through by mere thinking.
Sodiya said efforts must be channeled to ensure Nigeria did not miss the opportunities embedded in the Industry 4.0, which he described as crucial to manufacturing, industrialisation, education, and the economy as a whole.
Calling on the Federal government to ensure provision of adequate infrastructure and policies that the country can leverage to leapfrog the development, Sodiya said Fourth Industrial Revolution is also critical to the government’s digital economy agenda.
The NCS president said huge opportunities including jobs creation, smart manufacturing, skills development, small and medium enterprises (SMEs) growth, and economic revitalisation come with Industry 4.0.
According to him, the speed, breadth and depth of this revolution is forcing people to rethink how countries develop, how organisations create value and even what it means to be human.
“The Fourth Industrial Revolution is about more than just technology-driven change; it is an opportunity to help everyone, including leaders, policy-makers and people from all income groups and nations, to harness converging technologies in order to create an inclusive, human-centred future,” he added.
The Fourth Industrial Revolution also known as 4IR represents a fundamental change in the way people live, work and relate to one another.
The World Economic Forum (WEF), described it as a new chapter in human development, enabled by extraordinary technology advances commensurate with those of the first, second and third industrial revolutions.
According to Sodiya, who informed that the forthcoming NCS international conference, which will hold from August 11 to 13 virtually, will focus more on the potential of 4IR under the theme, “Emerging Applications and Technologies for Industry 4.0 (EATI 2020),” also said Industry 4.0 can help the country mitigate the rising poverty level.
While pledging the readiness of the NCS to help the government realise this opportunity whenever the body, with about 15,000 members, spread across all states of the federation, is called upon for assistance, Sodiya urged the private sector not to sleep or leave everything to the government.He said as much as the larger task of realising 4IR lies with the government, the private sector should be ready to key into the development pattern.
The NCS president added that the theme of the conference was carefully and scientifically chosen to provide the needed technological support for industries in this modern society.
“Industry 4.0 or the Fourth Industrial revolution is simply about smart manufacturing. The technological components of Industry 4.0 are full process and production line automation; intelligent control of cyber-physical systems; and adoption of Internet of Things (IoT), robotics, big data analytics, cloud computing, and machine learning. As a nation, our industries must leverage these technologies for enhanced profitability and economic well-being,” he stated.
Lending credence to the importance of 4IR to Nigeria’s development, the Chairman, Conferences and Exhibition, NCS, Ayodeji Adetogun, urged Nigeria must wake up from her slumber, stressing that the Fourth Industrial Revolution holds key to greater economic freedom.
Adetogun said 4IR is fast changing the old order, adding that the coronavirus pandemic has opened people to so many opportunities technology can avail, “as such, Nigeria cannot afford to relax. This is the reason we see collaboration as part of the instrument that can help realise this opportunity.”
He disclosed that the NCS conference will provide a multi-stakeholder forum to examine pertinent considerations in showcasing emerging applications and technologies to achieving a fourth industrial revolution that will lead to sustainable development.
According to him, engagement opportunities will be explored during the conference to present and develop effective strategies, creative approaches and practical solutions.