·Anything that cannot be technologified is not a thing of the future – Kenneth Nwokoro
By Helen Chimezie
The first ever Amazon Web Services (AWS) hybrid meetup held in Port Harcourt with over 150 participants in the physical attendance.
The event which held on July 29, 2023 was convened by Kenneth Nwokoro, the Chief Executive Officer of Spital Labs, who is also the convener of Mind the Gap Tech Initiative.
While speaking at the event, the Spital Labs boss, noted that “anything that cannot be technologified is not a thing of the future.”
According to him, getting people to understand that technology is actually where we are headed, and that it is the new gold, necessitated the meetup.
Nwokoro said the meetup is to bring some sensitization and awareness round about the conversations on cloud computing, which is where the world is obviously moving to at the moment.
“People need to take interest in acquiring technological skills, and for people who have a skillset that is not tech related, is for them to also begin to upskill because the whole conversations about Artificial Intelligence (AI) taking over the workspace is very critical and it is a must for everybody to upskill so they remain relevant in the future technology is taking us to, which is the future at the moment,” he said.
He revealed that: “Spital Labs is actually the organization that is partnering with the Amazon Web Services, Nigeria User Group to organize this meetup in Port Harcourt.
“This is actually the first meetup in Port Harcourt, and it is a physical and virtual meeting, so it is hybrid.
“This is the AWS meetup, and what we do here, is that people come together, as well as experts in the field of cloud computing, which is the theme of this meetup.
“To talk about how cloud computing will actually better lives, how it will improve businesses, operations and performances. And what sort of platforms applications are available for use as a business person.
“This will address the issue of youth restiveness, because it will equip young people with some good skillset that will pull them out from their idle state, because an idle mind like we know is the devil’s workshop.
“If people are fully engaged, they will probably not think of violence and other social vices that will bring about disturbances in the society.
“So, it is very important to get young people to take up the tech space, because tech itself is where all the jobs are going to. Everyone wants to hire a tech enthusiast, or someone who has tech abilities.
“Everything we are using now are all powered by tech. So, there is every reason to encourage them to go into tech skills.”
Speaking on building a Zero Trust architecture on AWS, the keynote speaker at the meeting, John Johan who presented virtually, talked about the fundamentals, guiding principles and cited examples of Zero Trust with AWS.
John Johan who is an Associate Solution Architect based in Cape Town, South Africa, said from a securing standpoint, AWS is a security model.
The last speaker Aniefiok Gabriel Friday discussed about privacy concerns, he differentiated between privacy and security.
He urged participants to plan their solutions to have privacy in view, as privacy is very important on the cyber space.
Giving a goodwill message, Imma Umoh a business economist encouraged participants to embrace and utilize technology, as it is our new reality.
“You do not need to be a techy. All you need to do is to identify a problem and get someone in the techy space to come and solve it.”
Also giving a goodwill message at the meeting, Ifeoma Ndekwu, the Assistant Programme’s Manager of Stakeholder Democracy Network and Head of Economic diversification, while commending the convener said the meetup is a very brilliant initiative, as it prepares people for the future.
Ndekwu said she is quite impressed to see young people and women that are passionate and enthusiastic about tech in the meeting.
She hinted that there is a programme her organization is implementing currently, having gotten funding from the European Union to train about 1,500 women in the Niger Delta on different tech skills.
She stated that: “The beauty about the grant is that we are not just doing the regular three days or one week tech training programmes. We are going to train the women for three months. We will get industry certified facilitators to train the women and position them to either gain employment or enhance their businesses.”
She also hinted that Spital Labs is one of their partners in delivering on the project.
The event had a question-and-answer session, Amazon vouchers, and other gifts were won by participants.
Commenting on the meetup, one of the participants, a Professor of Management and Entrepreneurship from the University of Port Harcourt, Edwina Amah said she recently developed interest in Cyber Security because of her daughter’s career success in it, and that motivated her to attend the meeting.
She said she has gained a lot from meetup, while commending tech agencies bringing such initiatives to Nigeria.
“They are doing us a lot of favour by making us get knowledge we can use anywhere. Sensitization are very necessary, and I urge people out there to partake of it,” she said.