“I grew up in Nigeria, where I gained Bachelor of Technology in Mathematics and Computer Sciences; the country remains close to my heart. Later I moved to Europe, achieved MSc in Systems Design Engineering, Austria, as well as Strategic Planning Studies, Oxford UK. I am now working for an international bank as a Senior Data Integration Manager. In the meantime, I am completing a PhD in IT and Development Studies.
While on LinkedIn I came across the CD4D project which is also implemented in Nigeria. This immediately appealed to me because I would so like to contribute to the development of my country of birth. Information Technology is my area of specialization and I strongly believe it can help lift people out of poverty. CD4D also got my interest because the project is run by IOM, being an Intergovernmental Organization and is linked to reaching SDG goals. My involvement is on a voluntary basis; which is fine as I am very keen to share my expertise. IOM asked me to support the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) in Abuja, Nigeria.
NITDA is a federal government agency with a mission to create and implement information and technology structures. I was asked to transfer my knowledge to help develop capacity digital literacy framework and emerging technologies development. This is my area of expertise and by sharing my knowledge I can contribute to improving the lives of the people.
I started in January 2021 with my first virtual 3-month assignment, which was so successful, it was continued by another 3 months. Because certain COVID-19 restrictions were lifted, I was able to travel to Abuja for the first 3 weeks of the second assignment, at NITDA’s request.
This allowed me to connect with the right technical working teams and persons: I wanted to involve and enthuse the agency’s technical guys since I aim for tangible results. Together I am sure we can develop the desired technical framework. I have trained NITDA staff plus interns on data analytics; the Director of NITDA’s IT Infrastructure and Solutions Team found my contribution very useful to achieve the required output. He even asked me to be a NITDA’s Ambassador. That gave me a sense of accomplishment!
If you have expertise that can be beneficial for your country of origin, do not hesitate, join IOM’s CD4D programme! Never imagine your contribution as a drop in the ocean. If IOM continues this kind of programme, in the long run, if the country implemented the outcomes, it will enhance living conditions, which could result in people no longer having to migrate due to lack of opportunities. I am in any case willing to do a similar assignment again.”