Popular Nigerian entrepreneur and the CEO of Hotels.ng, Mark Essien, recently explained why it is of uttermost importance for Nigerian technology firms to always avail young and inexperienced tech talents a chance.
Taking to his favourite social media — Twitter, Mr Essien stated that because the Nigerian tech industry in its infancy, it is is difficult to find a lot of experienced professionals in the field. For this reason, he advised that instead of always insisting on hiring only those with five years experience, tech companies should consider hiring those with little or no experience at all.
Unless this is done, a time will come when there will be no tech professionals with five years worth of working experience.
Nigerian Employers of Tech Talent: We are in the beginning stages of tech. That means there are few people with 5 years experience, many with 1 year experience. If you don't hire those with 1 year experience, in 5 years, there still won't be anyone with 5 years experience.
— Mark Essien (@markessien) May 23, 2019
Rome wasn’t built in a day: The entrepreneur is right to have advised tech companies to help build tech talents. The level of experience young techies have shouldn’t really deter companies from hiring them. These companies should, indeed, be willing and ready to invest in developing young talents. After all, Rome wasn’t built in a day, like the saying goes.
His Followers Agreed: Reacting to his post, many of Mark Essien’s followers agreed with his tweet. However, tech talents were also advised to always make efforts to develop themselves by themselves.
I think that developers also need to think about professional development beyond the companies' plan for them. In Nigeria, we still have "I better than my neighbour mentality", where once you have a job, as far as salary drops, people stop growing. We must focus on growth!
— GetDev (@GetDevCo) May 23, 2019
Another person gave a different perspective on the issue, noting that some companies do not bother with developing young talents because it is expensive and stressful to do.
Still the same thing. Nigerian Companies should have junior positions, so that there would be the next seniors.
The truth is most companies don't want to go through the stress of trial and error and trainings. They just want already made professionals to fall from the sky😂
— NitsuaReal (@RealNitsua) May 24, 2019
Meanwhile, another person opined that work experience doesn’t necessarily come from how long one has been in a job.
Besides, I don't buy the idea that experience comes with lenghtvof time (in years)spent on a job, per se. Whoever came up with that idea?
— nnamdi (@nudavid09) May 23, 2019
Archaic Practice? Another follower of the entrepreneur stated that Nigeria is still backward with its standard of demanding many years of experience to get a job. This is because most advanced countries are known for tapping knowledge and talents right out of their universities.
#EndSARS: CACOVID earmarks over N250 billion to rebuild police stations and create jobs
CACOVID has budgeted nothing less than N250 billion to rehabilitate damaged police stations across the country and solve the issue of unemployment.
The Coalition Alliance Against COVID (CACOVID) has budgeted nothing less than N250 billion to rehabilitate damaged police stations across the country and solve the issue of unemployment.
This is in response to the post-EndSARS violence which led to the loss of lives and valuable property last October.
This is according to a recent press release by the CBN, and seen by Nairametrics. The latest action is sequel to series of decisions reached at the stakeholders’ engagement under the CACOVID, which is aimed at developing measures that will support the government’s effort in rebuilding confidence in the nation’s economy.
What you should know
• In a bid to further strengthen the security apparatus in the country, CACOVID has committed to providing over N100 billion to procure equipment and gadgets for the Nigerian Police Force over the next 2 years.
• It also earmarked the sum of over N150 billion to set up and implement the Youth Development Programme which will be available at selected training centres across the country. The programme is expected to provide vocational and technical education for at least 4 million Nigerian youths over the next 5 years, with beneficiaries getting trained on craftwork, plumbing, masonry, carpentry, and other artisanal related skills for which sufficient demand exist in Nigeria.
- The selected student/beneficiaries will be eligible to access a N25 billion fund domiciled to support the entrepreneurial drive of the beneficiaries
- For the out-of-school graduates that possess certain Entrepreneurial skills, CACOVID will be working with Bankers Committee to complete the Creative center at National Arts Theater area of Lagos in four select areas namely; ICT and software design/development, Fashion, Music and Movies. This project is expected to cost the Bankers Committee over N40 Billion.
Other key resolutions of the Alliance include;
- Banks and financial institutions would be required to extend relief through concessionary loans to affected businesses and firms, so they can rebuild and restock their stores and continue to conduct their business activities
- CACOVID has committed to fully rehabilitate all 44 damaged and destroyed police stations nationwide in a bid to restore provision of security in affected locations.
Why it matters
The response is a way of complementing the Federal Government’s effort of rebuilding the economy which has been badly affected by the pandemic and violent demonstrations. As a way of forestalling future occurrences, CACOVID highlighted unemployment as a key issue that ought to be addressed, in lieu of that, a Youth Development Fund which is aimed at advancing entrepreneurship in the country, is mooted.
Covid-19: African Union in talks with China and Russia over vaccine
The AU and Africa CDC have revealed that they have reached out to both China and Russia over the possibility of vaccine partnerships.
The Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention and the African Union announced they have been in talks with China and Russia over the possibility of vaccine partnerships to ensure that Africa is not left behind when vaccines become available.
This was disclosed by John Nkengasong, Africa CDC Chief, at the Bloomberg Invest Africa online conference.
“We are not limiting ourselves to any particular partner. As a continent of 1.2 billion people, we are willing to work with any partner who adheres to our strategic plan for vaccine development and access in Africa.
He said that the WHO Covax programme only covers 20% of the population, but Africa will need 60% of its population vaccinated to achieve herd immunity.
“There are multiple avenues being explored now to make sure Africa has the appropriate doses of vaccines and also that we have that in a timely fashion, not in a delayed manner,” Nkengasong said.
He revealed that the AFREXIM Bank agreed to finance vaccine procurement with $5 billion and is waiting to see how much it will receive from World Bank’s $12 billion vaccine procurement fund for developing nations.
What you should know
Nairametrics reported earlier this month that Pfizer Inc. disclosed that its experimental vaccine, which is jointly developed with BioNTech, was more than 90% effective in preventing COVID-19, based on initial data from a large study in the ongoing phase 3 trials.
Last week, a pharmaceutical company, Moderna Inc., stated that its COVID-19 vaccine was 94.5% effective in treating coronavirus, after preliminary analysis of a large late-stage clinical trial.
The G-20 nations also announced a pledge to pay for vaccine distribution to developing nations that could not afford it. The leaders also unveiled a debt extension programme to developing nations during the weekend’s G-20 summit.
The Federal Government of Nigeria also announced through the Ministry of Health, that it would inaugurate an 18-man Covid-19 Vaccine Task Team, in a bid to ensure vaccine security In Nigeria.
Covid-19: EU considers skipping vaccine patents to boost vaccine access
The EU has disclosed plans to increase its access to Covid-19 vaccines by offering financial incentives to vaccine production companies.
The European Union (EU) says its planning emergency measures to increase its access to Covid-19 vaccines including sidestepping patent rights and offering financial incentives to vaccine production companies to move production to Europe.
This was revealed in an EU document on Wednesday and reported by Reuters. The Document says the EU may create an emergency coordination mechanism to be issued at short notice when the EU needs a vaccine license, which is different from fully patent waivers, discussed in the WTO last week.
The EU says the new move will ensure faster procedures during a pandemic, which will enable generic production in the EU without the consent of patent holders.
“The Commission sees the need to ensure that effective systems for issuing compulsory licenses are in place, to be used as a means of last resort and a safety net, when all other efforts to make IP (intellectual property) available have failed,” the EU’s document said.
The EU’s actions may be triggered by its inability to access the antiviral drug, remdesivir, during the pandemic, as the United States ordered most of the stock.
The EU also disclosed that it will begin a consultation process with pharmaceutical companies next year to address issues in its pharmaceutical value chains. They added that measures could be imposed to encourage manufacturers to move pharmaceutical production to Europe from China and India.
“The Commission calls on member states to ensure that the tools they have are as effective as possible; for instance, by putting in place fast-track procedures for issuing compulsory licenses in emergency situations,” the EU said.
They added that it is urgent “to assess whether manufacturing capacity for certain critical medicines may be required in the EU.”
“We need to be able to rely on ourselves, not on others,” the Commission’s Vice President, Margaritis Schinas said. He disclosed that the EU is working on more compliance with drug supply need and increased stock levels by 2022.
What you should know
This comes as surprise considering the EU rejected a World Trade Organization (WTO) proposal last week to waive the intellectual property rights needed for the manufacturing of Covid-19 vaccines. The waiver would have made the vaccine access cheaper for developing nations.