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Nigeria needs more innovators to address its economic challenges—Dele Odufuye

Key highlights

  • The Cavista Country Director said most challenges confronting Nigeria can be addressed by building more innovators.
  • He said the country is already blessed with talents and all they need is encouragement and assistance to hone their skills.
  • Through hackathons at universities, he said Nigeria will be able to build more talents that will rule the tech world.

The Vice President and Country Director at Cavista Nigeria, Dele Onafuye has said that Nigeria needs to have deliberate strategies to build more innovators from the pool of talents available across the country.

He stated this at a hackathon organized by the company for the students of Babcock University.

According to him, Nigeria already has potential solutions to address all its challenges with the crop of talented people spread across the country.

He said most people with innovative skills only need to be encouraged and helped to hone the skills.

He said this was one of the reasons the company had decided to hold hackathons in some universities across the country to catch them young and build a pool of talented Nigerians that will become tech founders.

Need to build talents

Speaking at the grand finale of the hackathon, where 3 out of the 7 teams that pitched their ideas were awarded, Odufuye said:

  • “Across the world, we have hired over 1000 engineers working with Cavista. In our hunt for talent, we have seen that there is a need to grow the talent for the marketplace, and what other place is best to catch them young than our higher institutions?
  • “So, the end gain is not the reward, that is to motivate them to do something within 24 hours. And now that we have seen what they have done, there’s a post-hackathon event to help them to perfect their product and make it to market Most of them are future founders that will build not just what Nigeria needs but also what the world needs.
  • “When the young ones come up with solutions as we have seen today, they automatically help our society because their products are addressing our challenges. For instance, those that came up with a healthcare solution will be helping me and my family, and many Nigerians will benefit from it. Likewise, those that came up with a recycling solution, it is for the benefit of society. We need more people to come up with these solutions to address our challenges as a country.”

The team that emerged winner of the hackathon, Team Dev Ninjas, was awarded the sum of N1 million for coming up with a web application solution that seeks to solve one healthcare challenge facing many Nigerians.

The product called ‘Drug Alat’, automates the process of prescription at hospitals while also alerting people on drugs when it’s time to take their drugs.

Team Javascript Developer came second with ‘Donorly’, a centralized blood management system, and was awarded N500,000, while Team Spontaneous emerged 3rd with their waste recycling solution called ‘Enviromend’ and received a N300,000 cash reward.

Odufuye said the hackathon would also be held in several other universities across the country as Cavista is poised to build more talents for the country.


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