To develop ICT-based capacity for strengthening Research and Higher Education Institutions (HEIs); Facilitate and nurture collaboration between HEIs to cultivate a favourable policy environment; develop, utilise and sustain ICT networks, services and shared resources consistent with institutional roles as foci for development.

Strategy, Policy & Management (SPM) Track 2014

The Nigeria ICT Forum is delighted to announce the 2014 Strategy, Policy and Management (SPM) Track. This event is scheduled to hold as follows:

Date: November 24th – 28th November, 2014
Venue: The Forum Secretariat, 25A Libreville Street, Off Aminu Kano Crescent, Wuse 2 Abuja, FCT

Who should attend: CIOs (Chief Information Officers)/CTOs (Chief Technical Officers and their Deputies, Heads of IT Units, Directors, Policy Makers, Planners, Managers and Administrators.

Prerequisites: Experience with Management and Administration of Departments/units/projects that provide ICT services to users.

Outcome: Delegates should be able to;

• Develop ICT Strategic Plans, Monitor and Evaluate Plan Implementation
• Write ICT RFPs, Proposals and Grants
• Manage HR, Organizational Structure and Effectively Deploy Staff
• Initiate, Plan, Monitor, Control Projects and Processes
• Develop Business Plans, as well as various Network and System Policies for their organizations.

Click click here to apply, for more information, please contact: secretariat@forum.org.ng

Please note that limited seats are available for this event.

To receive relevant information on activities in Research and Education networking, click here to subscribe to the Stakeholders mailing list.

Summary of ngNOG VIII, University of Benin: 03 -09 Nov, 2013

The 8th edition of the annual Nigerian Network Operators' Group (ngNOG) Workshop and Meetings were successfully hosted by the University of Benin (Uniben)in from –03rd -09th November, 2013.. Instructors and organizers however were at the ancient city of Benin from the 31st of October, 2013 for the workshop set-up.

The 2013 ngNOG Workshop was declared open by the Vice Chancellor University of Benin, Prof. O. Oshodin (who was represented by Prof. Stella Chiemeke, The Director of ICT Uniben). The workshop was closed with a celebratory dinner hosted by the Bandwidth Consortium (BWC)

Despite the ongoing Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) strike, Sixty two (62) delegates from 18 Institutions and Organizations from all over the country participated in the five parallel tracks offered at the 2013 ngNOG workshop in Benin city. This number is however low compared to the 92 delegates from 32 Institutions and organizations represented at the ngNOG 2012 workshop held in Kaduna. The event also recorded the lowest number of delegates to the ICT Strategy, Policy and Management (SPM) track.

The distribution of the 62 delegates to the 2013 workshop tracks is given below:

  • 11 System Administration (SA)
  • 28 Internet Infrastructure (II)
  • 14 Internet Services and Applications (IS)
  • 3 ICT Strategy, Policy and Management (SPM)
  • 6 Applications and Content Development (ACD)

Host University of Benin (Uniben) led institutional representation with 25delegates. It was followed by the the Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria with 6, and Usumanu Danfodio University, Sokoto(UDU) with 5 delegates.

12 of the delegates were sponsored by the The Bandwidth Consortium (BWC) for her member institutions.

Participation rate for women at ngNOG Benin was 7%. This is the lowest female participation ever experienced with the ngNOG events. It was 26% in 2006; 13% in 2007; 14% in 2008; 19% in 2009; 33% in 2010; and 12% at ngNOG Ife in 2011 and 14% in 2012.

The opening ceremony was well attended by all delegates and some principal officials of the University of Benin.

Boot Camp

This year’s boot camp was attended by over 40 participants who were taken through the Linux and IP basics to ensure that all participants are equipped with requisite skills for the commencement of the workshop

Workshop and Meetings

As is customary with the ngNOG events for the last few years, the tracks held in parallel were the Application and Content Development, Internet Services, Internet Infrastructure, System Administration and Strategy, Policy and Management.

The Strategy, Policy and Management track recorded the lowest ever experienced in the ngNOG events. Only three participants were present.

The Appropriate Power Technology track did not run at this years edition.

The evening events was well attended by delegates and very crucial issues were discussed during these evening meetings: Issues like, way forward for ngNOG and NREN mandate.

Social Events and Sight Seeing

The University of Benin management hosted delegates to a cocktail on Monday the 4th of November; the cocktail was attended by top officials of the University and all delegates.
Delegates were shown round the ancient Benin city and a visit to the museum in the evening of Friday the 8th of November.

The closing dinner was proudly sponsored by the Bandwidth Consortium (BWC). Delegates were treated to a very nice dinner with entertainment by the University of Benin theater arts group.

Acknowledgements

We are grateful to the various Institutions and Firms, who contributed instructors and presenters. They include: Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife (OAU); Yaba College of Technology, Lagos; University of Jos; Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria; University of Benin; Bayero University Kano; The Bandwidth Consortium; Internet Exchange Point of Nigeria (IXPN) ; NISTech Ltd; Eko-Konnect; and Meed Networks.

We continue to thank our international friends who are never far away from us, as well as our membership and friends at home.

The Bandwidth Consortium was a distinguished Corporate Sponsor of ngNOG 2013. The conference bags were donated by Meed Networks this year.

ngNOG Benin is a profound statement in so very many ways. It is proudly dedicated to the amazing courage, commitment and support of the delegates, instructors and organizers, hosts, the LOC and interns, the host community and our supporters.

Summary of ngNOG VII, Kaduna Polytechnic, Kaduna: Nov 26 - Dec 02, 2012

The 7th edition of the annual Nigerian Network Operators' Group (ngNOG) Workshop and Meetings were successfully co-hosted by the National Board for Technical Education and the Kaduna Polytechnic (KadPoly) in Kaduna from November 26 - December 2, 2012.

The 2012 ngNOG Workshop in Kaduna was declared open by the Honourable Minister of Education, Professor Ruqayyah Ahmad Rufa'i (who was represented on the occasion by Professor Sagir Adamu Abbas) a day after the bomb blast at Jaji in Kaduna State (which sad event actually happened on delegates' arrival date). It was closed with a celebratory dinner by the newly-appointed Rector of Kaduna Polytechnic, Dr. M.B. Ibrahim, the night before the Local Council elections in Kaduna State and the ngNOG Meeting, when (that part of) the world was to end according to some media reports.

Ninety seven (97) amazing Nigerian delegates from 32 Institutions and Organizations from all over the country denied hysteria and participated in the six parallel tracks offered at the 2012 ngNOG workshop in Kaduna, making it the best attended and diversified in the history of the event. There were 35 delegates from 14 institutions in the single track at pre-ngNOG Ibadan; 56 delegates from 14 institutions in the three tracks of ngNOG Jos; 75 delegates from 21 institutions in five tracks at ngNOG Kano; 71 delegates from 25 institutions in the five tracks of the 2008 ngNOG in Lagos; 85 delegates from 15 Institutions and Organizations in the five parallel tracks of the 2009 ngNOG workshop in Ilorin; 66 delegates from 18 Institutions in the six parallel tracks of the 2010 ngNOG workshop in Port Harcourt; and 77 delegates from 31 institutions in the five tracks offered at the 2011 edition in Ile-Ife.

The distribution of the 97 delegates to the 2012 workshop tracks is given below:

  • 25 System Administration (SA)
  • 23 Internet Infrastructure (II)
  • 13 Internet Services and Applications (IS)
  • 14 ICT Strategy, Policy and Management (SPM)
  • 15 Applications and Content Development (ACD)
  • 07 Appropriate Power Technologies (APT)

ngNOG VII at KadPoly was also dominated by Academic Network Operators: 88% of the 97 delegates were from Higher Education Institions (HEIs). Besides being the best attended so far, the 2012 ngNOG at KadPoly records several other significant milestone achievements. ngNOG VII is the first to be hosted outside the University Education Sub-System. From becoming visible at the 6th edition at OAU Ife, Polytechnics and Colleges moved on to account for 53% of the institutions and 64%% of all the delegates at ngNOG KadPoly. And for the first time ever, there was broad representation of Institutional Principal Officers to interact directly with ICT Directors from across Higher Education sectoral divides in the SPM track. As a result, Librarians from UniPort, KadPoly and other institutions are discussing systemic strategies to widen and deepen useful and credible interventions and relationships championed by the Mortenson Center.

Host Kaduna Polytechnic (KadPoly) led institutional representation with 28 (29% of) delegates. It was followed by the Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) with 7, and Yaba College of Technology, Lagos with 5 delegates. The 3rd position was a tie between the Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, the National Assembly and the University of Ibadan, each with 4 delegates. In terms of utilization of hosting benefits, while the University of Jos retains its long-standing record (50% of all delegates at the 1st edition), KadPoly is almost at par with the University of Ilorin for a healthy third position in the history of the event.

Participation rate for women at ngNOG Kaduna was 14%. This is a little higher than the previous year, but is still low. It was 26% in 2006; 13% in 2007; 14% in 2008; 19% in 2009; 33% in 2010; and 12% at ngNOG Ife in 2011.

Meetings and Tuturials

It was an especially rich and interactive event, with daily evening discussions respectively on the following topics of current interest:

  • Cloud Computing issues of data security, confidentiality, and cloud ownership) were discussed and moderated by Kanmi Adewara of OAU Ife;
  • e-learning (and issues of technology platforms, management and roles of teachers and students, and experiences of the various institutions), was moderated by Benjamin Ben of UniJos;
  • Data Security issues (including unauthorized access, disaster recovery, integrity, and physical security) were discussed and moderated by Geraldine Daloeng of UniJos. Interest in this topic was such that the discussions spilled over to a second evening; and
  • Internet Governance, Net neutrality, and Cyber Security issue-discussions were moderated by Dele Amire of Network Infrastructure & Services Technologies Ltd.

Inadequate preparedness of students for eLearning was a common problem. In order to accelerate and improve impactful participation of students in eLearning projects, the ngNOG 2012 Assembly recommended that the Forum and Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) should do what they can towards upgrading ICT awareness, knowledge and skills of secondary school students and teachers. Most HEIs have faculties and/or institutes of education, as well as primary and secondary schools for their staffs' (and neighborhood) children. Many HEIs also admit significant proportions of their freshmen and women from their own schools of basic and remedial studies. These are logical places for HEIs to start making appropriate interventions towards enabling participation of new entrants in eLearning activities. This is especially important because (among other things) the largest classes on all campuses- where eLearning would have immediate impact and simplify life- are the general studies programs, and these are populated by new entrants.

On Friday 30th November, an enthralling tutorial was delivered by Ahmed Atere of Meed Technologies Ltd, on planning, designing, equipment standards, building and maintenance of Campus Networks.

The 2012 ngNOG Meeting took place on Saturday, December 1st, at Hotel 17 in Kaduna (where most delegates and instructors were accommodated; SPM track delegates were accommodated at the nearby Asaa Pyramid Hotel, on the same street). An overview of ngNOG this far was presented and discussed. Workshop track reports and suggestions for improvements were presented and discussed. Panel discussions were held on formation of proper REN clusters, sustenance and maintenance of the high standards and integrity of ngNOG and the Forum, and plans for specialized workshops (esp. on network monitoring) and collaboration project activities.

Delegates requested that a special account be opened by the Forum, for alumni and other individuals to make free financial contributions towards sustaining ngNOG and the Forum. The ngNOG Assembly also urged that Institutions should be enlightened to accelerate impact and rate of capacity building, by each sending a full compliment of delegates to ngNOG (that is, at least one delegate to each of the six tracks).

Tours and Social Networking Activities

A football match took place at Murtala Square in the heart of Kaduna, in the morning of Friday November 30, with ngNOG delegates scoring 2 goals and allegedly allowing instructors to score as many as 5 goals Smiling

After the match, delegates were treated to a tour of the Centre for Historical Documentation and Research (Arewa House). The day closed with a grand dinner and cultural dances organized by our host at the Kaduna Polytechnic. "We are the practical, doing sector of higher education, as you shall see very shortly", remarked the Rector, on behalf of the NBTE Executive Secretary.

Earlier (on Saturday, November 24th), ngNOG Instructional Track Leaders and Organizers travelled to Zaria to tour the new Campus Network and Data Centre at the Ahmadu Bello University that was dedicated (by Jonathan Fanton, the former President of the MacArthur Foundation) just a day earlier.

Based on their report, SPM Track instructors and delegates (including the Rector of KadPoly and the Director of the Centre of Excellence for Technical and Vocational Education and Training) made the same trip (on Wednesday, November 28th) to ABU Zaria, to have a look and pay homage at the "Holy of Holies" of Campus Network and Data Centre Infrastructure in Nigeria.

Travelling from Kaduna to Zaria requires driving through Jaji, where a bombing incident had taken place on Sunday, November 25- the arrival date of delegates to ngNOG VII.

As we had occasion to remark at the conclusion of the ngNOG editions at Jos in 2006 and in the Niger Delta in 2010, we had a marvelous time and not a single untoward event happened to any of us.

Acknowledgements

We are grateful to the various Institutions and Firms, who contributed instructors and presenters. They include: Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife (OAU); Yaba College of Technology, Lagos; University of Jos; Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria; University of Benin; Bayero University Kano; Federal University, Lafia (FULAFIA); University of Port Harcourt (UniPort); the Bandwidth Consortium; NISTech Ltd; Datasphir Ltd; Skolak Resources Ltd.; and Meed Networks.

With very great appreciation to the Carnegie Corporation of New York, the MacArthur Foundation, and to Google Inc. for supporting this event and the achievement of our mission. We continue to thank our international friends at the Network Start up Resource Centre and the Mortenson Center who are never far away from us, as well as our membership and friends at home.

Google Global Services Nigeria Limited was a distinguished Corporate Sponsor of ngNOG 2012. Blue was the color of ngNOG 2012, and the T-Shirts were donated by Meed Networks this year as well.

This event built-upon foundations laid at the preparatory-ngNOG Workshop that held at the University of Ibadan in July 2006, and the six full editions that were hosted at UniJos, BUK, Unilag, Unilorin, Uniport, and OAU Ife.

ngNOG Kaduna is a profound statement in so very many ways. It is proudly dedicated to the amazing courage, commitment and support of the delegates, instructors and organizers, hosts, the LOC and interns, the host community and our supporters.


Summary of ngNOG VI, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife: 16 - 22 October 2011

The 6th edition of the annual Nigerian Network Operators' Group (ngNOG) Workshop and Meetings, was successfully hosted by the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife (OAU) from 16 - 22 October 2011.

Seventy seven (77) delegates from 31 Institutions and Organizations participated in the five parallel tracks offered at the 2011 ngNOG workshop in Ile-Ife. This compares to the 35 delegates from 14 institutions in the single track at pre-ngNOG Ibadan; 56 delegates from 14 institutions in the three tracks of ngNOG Jos; 75 delegates from 21 institutions in five tracks of ngNOG Kano; 71 delegates from 25 institutions in the five tracks of the 2008 ngNOG in Lagos; 85 delegates from 15 Institutions and Organizations in the five parallel tracks of the 2009 ngNOG workshop in Ilorin; and 66 delegates from 18 Institutions in the six parallel tracks of the 2010 ngNOG workshop in Port Harcourt.

The distribution of the 77 delegates to the 2011 workshop tracks is given below:

  • 12 System Administration (SA)
  • 19 Internet Infrastructure (II)
  • 12 Internet Services and Applications (IS)
  • 07 ICT Strategy, Policy and Management (SPM)
  • 27 Applications and Content Development (ACD)

ngNOG VI at OAU Ife was also dominated by Academic Network Operators: 79% of participants were from the HEIs. Beyond that, however, ngNOG 2011 featured the highest number and diversity of participating research and education institutions in the history of the event. For the first time ever, there was very significant participation of institutions from sectors of Higher Education other than universities. Eleven (11) universities maintained a sub-sector lead by accounting for 45% of the 77 delegates. This year, however, three (3) Research & Development Institutes also sent delegates, while the National Board for Technical Education and 13 Polytechnics from across the country accounted for 34% of delegates to ngNOG.

Achievement of this feat by the Technical Education Sub-System was the result of deliberate strategic action by Rectors of Polytechnics and the Management of the NBTE. For example, on 17-22 September 2011, in partnership with the NBTE, the Forum had conducted a sector-workshop for 30 academic network operators from 16 Polytechnics at the NBTE's UNESCO Centre in Kaduna, to prepare them for full participation at ngNOG Ife, among other objectives.

The 2011 ngNOG at OAU Ife records a significant milestone achievement - the emergence of a coherent and inclusive research and education networking community that reflects the diversity of higher education in Nigeria.

University Libraries were also present in force this year, thanks to the synergy grown with the Mortenson Center for International Library Programs. A special side-meeting of University Librarians took place and a cocktail party was hosted by them and the OAU Ife. This was to be the end of the project intervention by the Mortenson Centre, but it marked a new beginning as the University Librarians decided to really own the intervention by maintaining the relationship with other sources of funds: it was most delightful to observe Aisha Schnuer and Alade Dorman getting used to their new Nigerian names and attire.

The Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) led institutional representation with 10 delegates. It was followed by the host with 9 delegates, and the University of Ibadan with 7 delegates.

On the other hand, the participation rate for women at ngNOG Ife was 12%, which is lower than was ever recorded. It was 26% in 2006; 13% in 2007; 14% in 2008; 19% in 2009; and 33% at ngNOG 2010.

We are grateful to the various Institutions and Firms, who contributed instructors and presenters. They include: Yaba College of Technology, Lagos; American University of Nigeria, Yola; University of Jos; Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria; University of Benin; University of Ibadan; Bayero University Kano; NISTech Ltd; Datasphir Ltd; GDES/ SKANNET; Google University Access Program; and the Mortenson Center for International Library Programs.

With very great appreciation to the Carnegie Corporation of New York, the MacArthur Foundation, and Google Inc. for supporting this event; to the Network Start up Resource Centre, which donated books and networking equipment; to the Mortenson Center; and Meed Networks, which donated T-shirts for this event.

Delegates, observers, our volunteer instructors and presenters, and their employers; as well as our Membership, the ngNOG host institution, LOC, Interns and organizers, are deeply appreciated.

This workshop built-upon foundations laid at the preparatory-ngNOG Workshop that held at the University of Ibadan in July 2006, and the five full editions that were hosted at UniJos, BUK, Unilag, Unilorin and Uniport. These were in turn, made possible by earlier editions of the INET and AfNOG workshops at which fora ngNOG instructors were mostly trained over the years, and will continue to be updated.

We remain deeply grateful to all our supporters and those who inspire us, including the very many who were not specifically mentioned in this summary.


Summary of the Campus Networks and ngREN Design Workshop, OAU Ife, July 10-15, 2011

The Nigeria ICT Forum and the Network Startup Resource center (NSRC) of the University of Oregon, organized an intensive, week long, hands-on workshop on Campus Network Design and REN Development, that was hosted by the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife (OAU), on July 10-15, 2011.

An international troupe of six (6) NSRC traveling geeks from the United States (Steven Huter, Dale Smith and Ron Milford), England (Brian Candler), Chile (Hervey Allen) and from Germany (Jens Kuehlers), was ensembled at Ife to train and guide 34 network engineers from 20 Nigerian universities, agencies and organizations.

The 34 delegates were from the Adekunle Ajasin University, Akungba; Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria; Bayero University Kano; Benson Idahosa University, Benin; Ebonyi State University, Abakaliki; Federal University of Technology, Akure; Micheal Okpara University of Agriculture, Umudike; National Board for Technical Education, Kaduna; National Teachers' Institute, Kaduna; Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka; Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife (OAU); University of Abuja; University of Agriculture, Abeokuta; University of Agriculture, Makurdi; University of Benin; University of Ibadan; University of Ilorin; University of Jos; University of Nigeria, Nsukka; and the University of Port Harcourt. It was delightful to see new inter-institutional and inter-sectoral bonding taking place, as this is essential for successful NREN formation.

This training program emphasized the importance of the campus network as the foundation in developing a robust, high performance National Research and Education Network (NREN). The hands-on course addressed design methodologies, including physical cabling, switching architectures, core campus routing and border network design (BGP) for institutions. The objectives were to:

  • Train network engineering staff on how to develop a strategic design plan for their campus networks to facilitate successful participation in the Nigerian and Regional Research and Education Networks;
  • Provide current best practices in designing and building hierarchical networks using structured cabling systems, layer 2 switches and layer 3 routers, including where to route and where to switch in campus networks;
  • Improve engineering skills and technical knowledge of campus networking staff to enable them operate their physical networks; and
  • Strengthen the Nigerian technical community (including, the human networks) to develop Nigeria's Research and Education cyberinfrastructure.

Delegates were grouped in to five, each on a seperate table in the laboratory. Each table was then provisioned with all the networking equipment and number resources required to simulate a campus network or a cluster of campus networks. Each group was then taught how to configure and operate its own network, and inter-connect as peers with the other different institutional networks, an Internet Exchange Point and a provider, effectively simulating the ngREN or a regional cluster in the laboratory.

For this remarkable hands-on activity to happen, 27 cartons of books and two and a half tonnes of donated networking equipment, including all the switches and routers required, were shipped to the Forum by the NSRC, and made available to delegates. At the conclusion of the activity, these were in turn donated by the Forum to the delegates and their institutions (respectively), to facilitate continuing education of the delegates and improvement of their campus networks.

The principal goal of helping to improve campus networks in Nigeria to prepare for the creation of the physical infrastructure for a Nigerian Research and Education Network has been remarkably achieved.

Never before had so much and so many resources been invested in a single training activity by the Forum and our friends and their friends. Support for this event was sourced for and provided variously, and is all deeply appreciated. In particular, however, the Carnegie Corporation of New York (which provides support to NSRC, the Forum and OAU Ife); Google Inc. (which has given support to both NSRC and the Forum, contributed an instructor and donated some of the equipment); and the MacArthur Foundation, which supports both the Forum and the University of Ibadan (where an onsite network audit and consultation was provided during this event), should be mentioned. We also thank the International Research Network Connections program of the U.S. National Science Foundation for help with developing our national cyberinfrastructure via the NSRC.

On-site inspection and consulting was provided to the University of Ibadan on Friday 8th July, and to the workshop host institution throughout our stay at Ife. Network documentation and Case studies of our campus networks and how to anticipate bottlenecks and resolve them, were treated at evening tutorials. Delegates fully utilized the ensembled experts to consult on their campus networks at every "free" chance they could get.

Perhaps most importantly, it was delightful to note the healthy trend of seamless transitions of university administrations, integrity of strategic ICT visions and consistency of support for the Forum at key institutions like the University of Ibadan (UI) (where instructors and organizaers stopped for a day, to meet with the new VC (Professor I.F. Adewole) and witness the first meeting of the Ibadan REN cluster), and at the Obafemi Awolowo University.

Just a couple of weeks in Office, the new Vice-Chancellor of the Obafemi Awolowo University at Ife (OAU), Professor Idowu Bamitale Omole, was at hand to address and open this workshop. He pledged to host the Nigerian Network Operators Group workshop in a few months; to grow the Ife REN cluster and appointed a coordinator for it; and to discuss its interconnection with the nearby Ibadan REN cluster.

Now, if those are not best examples of new university administrations that were actually "running on landing" and taking us all to our envisioned destination, we would like to know your proposal!


New Research Fellowships in Peace, Security, and Development

The Carnegie Corporation of New York is supporting a new fellowship program in social sciences for emerging academics in Nigeria, Ghana, South Africa, Tanzania, and Uganda. The program has been designed, and is being administered by, the Social Science Research Council for an initial two-year period with the possibility of renewal.

The research theme for the program is peace, security, and development, broadly defined.

Three levels of fellowships are on offer, all for doctoral work:

  • dissertation proposal development (e.g. pre-testing a survey instrument or interview protocol);
  • doctoral research (e.g., to enable fieldwork); and
  • dissertation writing.

Fellowships are open on a competitive basis to African scholars without PhDs and who are affiliated with a university in Nigeria, Ghana, South Africa, Tanzania, or Uganda. Because of the Corporation’s emphasis on developing and retaining the next generation of African academics, priority will be given to applicants who have demonstrated a commitment to a career in teaching and research in the continent.

Diversity is prized, and women are especially encouraged to apply.

Application deadline for the first round of fellowships is 31 August 2011.

Attached is a poster for appropriate notice boards at your campus. Other details can be found here at the program's site.

The ngNOG V Workshop at UniPort: A Celebration in the Niger Delta

ngNOG 2010, the 5th anniversary edition of the annual series of the Nigerian Network Operators' Group (ngNOG) Workshop and Meetings, was successfully held and celebrated at the University of Port Harcourt (UniPort) from 10-16 October 2010.

Sixty six (66) delegates from 18 Institutions and Organizations participated in the six parallel tracks of the 2010 ngNOG workshop in Port Harcourt. This compares to the 35 delegates from 14 institutions in the single track at pre-ngNOG Ibadan; 56 delegates from 14 institutions in the three tracks of ngNOG Jos; 75 delegates from 21 institutions in five tracks of ngNOG Kano; 71 delegates from 25 institutions in the five tracks of the 2008 ngNOG in Lagos; and 85 delegates from 15 Institutions and Organizations in the five parallel tracks of the 2009 ngNOG workshop in Ilorin.

Professor Joseph A. Ajienka, the Vice-Chancellor of the University of Port Harcourt, was involved enough with the workshop to qualify as a delegate. He treated us to a fantastic closing dinner and social evening. The Niger Delta is safe, he seemed to declare, and the LOC proceeded to prove it by organizing an enthralling riverine sight-seeing tour to the legendary Kingdom of Opobo.

The University of Port Harcourt (UniPort) was where the Appropriate Power Technologies (APT) Track was conceived and tested out in 2006.

In 2010, UniPort consolidated its key historic position by inaugurating the Applications and Content Development Track of ngNOG that was delivered by international resource persons.

The distribution of the 66 delegates to the 2010 workshop tracks is given below:

  • 18 System Administration(SysAdmin)
  • 08 Internet Infrastructure (II)
  • 07 Internet Services and Applications (IS)
  • 04 Appropriate Power Technologies (APT)
  • 19 ICT Strategy, Policy and Management (SPM)
  • 10 Applications, Content Development and Management (ACD)

We are grateful to the various Institutions and Firms, who contributed instructors and presenters: Mortenson Center for International Library Programs; ICTP, Trieste; University of Jos ; Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria ; University of Benin ; University of Agriculture, Makurdi ; University of Ibadan ; Umaru Musa Yar'Adua University, Katsina ; Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife ; SKANNET(GDES) ; NISTech Ltd ; Datasphir Ltd and The Bandwidth Consortium .

Layer3 made a record cash donation of NGN 1.25 Million in support of this event, and also sent delegates to ngNOG Port Harcourt. And, of course, ISOC NG's Chief Giandomenico Massari sent their annual donation to the workshop site.

ngNOG V at Port Harcourt was also dominated by Academic Network Operators: 80% of participants were from the HEIs. As many as 20 participants were also affiliated to University Libraries this year, thanks to the synergy grown with the Mortenson Center for International Library Programs. Following University of Port Harcourt (UniPort) with 18 delegates, other contributors of delegates to ngNOG V were led this time around, by the University of Jos with 8 delegates and the National Assembly with 7 delegates, thanks to the facilitation provided by PARP.

At 33%, the participation rate for women was much better at Port harcourt than was ever recorded. It was 26% in 2006; 13% in 2007; 14% in 2008; and 19% in 2009.

Two tutorials were presented at ngNOG V: on Virtualization, by Dewole Ajao and Cletus Okolie, and Building Low Cost Network Storage, by Clement Onime.

The 2010 ngNOG meeting was the best attended so far, and featured key presentations on Carbon Credit by Nentawe Goshe, and outputs of Deliberations from the Strategy, Policy and Management track and the evening discussions by Bashir Sani.

This workshop built-upon foundations laid at the preparatory-ngNOG Workshop that held at the University of Ibadan in July 2006, and the four full editions that were hosted at UniJos, BUK, Unilag and Unilorin. These were in turn, made possible by earlier editions of the INET and AfNOG workshops at which fora ngNOG instructors were mostly trained over the past 11 years, and will continue to be updated.

With very great appreciation to the Carnegie Corporation of New York and the MacArthur Foundation for supporting this event; to the Network Start up Resource Centre, which donated books and networking equipment; to the Mortenson Center which donated books, supported delegates and sent resource persons; all the delegates, observers, and volunteer team of instructors and presenters, and their employers; as well as our Membership, and to the ngNOG 5th Annoversary workshop host institution, LOC, Interns and organizers.

We remain deeply grateful to all our supporters and those who inspire us, including the very many who were not specifically mentioned in this summary.


Nigerians Want Bread and Broadband!

The just concluded Broadband for Nigeria Stakeholders Forum was indeed a meeting that delivered on its objectives. It was held on Wednesday July 28, 2010 at the NCCE Hall, Central Business District, Abuja. Association for Progressive Communications (APC) provided the support funding while Fantsuam Foundation, Association of Telecommunications Companies of Nigeria, ATCON; Nigeria ICT Forum of Partnership Institutions and Telecom Answers Associates supplied the faculty which put the forum together.

After kicking off with exchange of pleasantries and a welcome address, the first Nigerian Broadband Stakeholders Forum got down to serious business with the presentation of a Broadband framework supported with a background document.

Engr. Titi Omo Ettu, President, Association of Telecommunication Companies in Nigeria, took the audience through these documents, spicing his presentation with examples and inside information which only long-time IT practitioners were privy to. Thereafter, delegates were invited to make their input. The BB4NG team had made efforts before the event to ensure a wide dissemination of the two key documents, through print and internet, and this seemed to have paid off as attested to by the quality and passion of contributions made by participants at the Forum.

The discussion and observation that followed the document presentation was rich and diverse, and it was one of such observations that seemed to have captured the essence of what the Nigerian Government needed to do, and do quickly. It was observed that Nigerians are at various levels in awareness of and demand for Broadband internet access, and the consensus is that this should not be a question of choosing either Bread or Broadband. Nigerians need both Bread and Broadband!

It was observed that beyond ensuring that the Broadband for Nigeria framework document, synergizes with ongoing and previous efforts of Government, it must be made explicit and clear to Government that BROADBAND IS THE MEDIUM THAT IS NEEDED TO ENSURE A SUCCESSFUL, SUSTAINABLE, AND INCLUSIVE ACHIEVEMENT OF OUR MGD COMMITMENTS AND VISION 2020-20.

This message came through this stakeholders forum loudly and clearly and it presents the Nigerian Government an opportunity to make Nigeria’s MDG commitments and Vision 2020-20, not a pyrrhic victory but a lasting reality. The message is that: broadband is the critical and efficient medium needed for the timely delivery of MDGs, Vision 2020-20 and ICT4D. In order to ensure that Nigeria’s MDG commitments and Vision 202020 reach their target audience in ALL the 774 Local Governments, it will require a substantial completion of fixed Broadband infrastructure that gives optimum connectivity within the country and to the global internet.

The First Nigerian Broadband Stakeholders Forum has delivered on its objectives and it has presented us the opportunity to make Nigeria’s MDG commitments and Vision 2020-20 a reality. The next crucial steps is to ensure that this message reaches all the people who will be responsible in developing the policy that will make this a reality.

The Forum, under the chairmanship of Mr. Olusola Teniola, Chief Operating Officer of Phase 3 Telecom, brought together a wide range of stakeholders. Senior Civil servants such as Dr. Moses Olateju Ojo Director, NCCE; Mr Obi Adindu, Senior Special Assistant to the Minister of Communication made contributions.

Chairman of NITDA, Hon Mohammed Bulama gave an inspiring speech while Secretary General of the Committee of Vice Chancellors of Nigerian Universities, Prof Jibril Dahiru Amin pledged the full support of Nigerian Universities for this effort and this was echoed by representatives from several research and educational institutions.

The IT industry had Dr Armstrong Takang, and other Senior Executives from IEEE, Monarch Communications Ltd, Linkserve, and President of the Information Technology Association of Nigeria, Dr Olufuye, were key contributors at the Forum.

Mr. Adrian Wood the pioneer MD of MTN, now CEO of BryMEDIA Consortium was there while President of Nigeria Computer Society, Prof. Charles Uwadia sent goodwill message and endorsement to the Forum. The presence of grassroot politicians, such as Councilor Ibrahim La’ah from Kaura Local Government of Kaduna State, showed the extent to which information about this event had been circulated. The Nigerian Military through Navy Commodore James Oluwole and Air Commodore Pat Udabor and other very senior Military officers also expressed full endorsement of the framework document. Civil society organisations such as Life Impact Foundation Intl., One World UK, Abuja Photographers Association, Center for Information technology & Development, Telecommunications Consumers Association of Nigeria, Development Information Network and national youth Corps members were also present.

Six additional items/ isssues were accepted to be addressed in the Framework Document.

Delegates represented the following organisations: Abuja Photographers Association; Adamawa State University; African Science & Tech Digest; Ahmadu Bello University; All Voices; Analytical Technology Ltd; ATCON; Bayero University Kano; Brymedia Group Ltd.; Businessday; Center for Information technology & Development; Committee of Vice Chancellors; Compass Nigeria; Consultancy Support Services-CS2; Daily Independent; Data ZA Ltd; Datasphir; DCOMMS-Defense Hqtrs.; Development Information Network; Fantsuam Foundation; Far Eye Marketing & Communications Ltd; FCE Kano; FCT Secondary Education Board; FCTA; Fed. Ministry I & C; Federal University of Tech. Akure; Financial Standard; Galaxy Backbone Plc.; Globacom Ltd.; Goga Investment Nig. Ltd.; Grassroot Systems Ltd.; Hafasco Communications Ltd.; Huawei Technologies Company Nigeria Ltd.; IEEE Nigeria; ITAN; Kasuf Continental Ltd.; Kaura LG. Kaduna; KJ Technologies Ltd.; Kolmart Nig. Ltd; Layer 3; Life Impact Foundation Intl.; Lifeboom Century; Linkserve Ltd.; Media Trust; Megadi Security Service; Muhtasib Resources Ltd. Sokoto; National Planning Commission; National Teachers Institute; National Youth Service Corps; NBTE; NCCE; News Agency of Nigeria; ng ICT Forum; Nigerian Airforce; Nigerian Navy; Nigerian Tribune; NITDA; NITEL; One World UK; ONSA; Phase 3 Telecomm Ltd; Rural Electrification Agency; Sapphire Consult; Self Employed; Special Advisor ICT, Sokoto State; Step B; Swap Technologies & Telecoms Plc; Technology Support Centre Nigeria; Telecom Answers Associates; Telecommunications Consumers Association of Nigeria; Tinitop Technologies Ltd.; Unetcom Technologies Ltd.; University of Agriculture, Makurdi; University of Ibadan; University of Mkar; Vanguard; Wise Point Technology; and Yentech Services.

More information: bb4ng@forum.org.ng

Summary of the 2009 ngNOG Workshop, University of Ilorin, 08-15 November

ngNOG 2009, the 4th in the annual series of the Nigerian Network Operators' Group (ngNOG) Workshops and Meetings, was successfully held at the University of Ilorin (Unilorin) from 08-15 November 2009.

Unilorin's Vice-Chancellor [and President of the Association of African Universities (AAU)], Professor Is-haq Olarewaju Oloyede, was an unprecedented model of top-level hosting support. The University of Ilorin set a new bar by supporting 20 of its staff and students to the workshop, extracting the maximum benefits of hosting the event. Not surprisingly, the VC Unilorin was unanimously appointed to serve as an ngNOG Ambassodor by the community.

Eighty five (85) delegates from 15 Institutions and Organizations participated in the five parallel tracks of the 2009 ngNOG workshop in Ilorin. This compares to the 35 delegates from 14 institutions in the single track at pre-ngNOG Ibadan; 56 delegates from 14 institutions in the three tracks of ngNOG Jos; 75 delegates from 21 institutions in five tracks of ngNOG Kano; and the 71 delegates from 25 institutions in the five tracks of ngNOG Lagos last year.

The distribution of the 85 delegates to the 2009 workshop tracks is given below:

  • 28 System Administration(SysAdmin)
  • 11 Internet Infrastructure (II)
  • 14 Internet Services and Applications (IS)
  • 06 Appropriate Power Technologies (APT)
  • 26 ICT Strategy, Policy and Management (SPM)

We are grateful to the various Institutions and Firms (Veritas University, Obehie ; University of Jos ; Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria ; University of Benin ; University of Agriculture, Makurdi ; University of Ibadan ; Umaru Musa Yar'Adua University, Katsina ; Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife ; SKANNET (GDES) ; NISTech Ltd ; and Tinitop Technologies ) who contributed the following 13 ngNOG IV Instructors: Ishaku Anaobi; Chistopher Anthony; Olayinka Christiana Toluwanimi; Dewole Ajao; Cletus Okolie; Geraldine Daloeng; Bamidele Amire; Emmanuel Onowojo; Nentawe Goshwe; Kayode Ayodele; Sunday Folayan; Ayodeji Oluleye; and Bashir Sani. And, thanks to BGL Securities , Sekyen was able to rejoin Secretariat and assist with workshop organization.

ngNOG IV at Ilorin was dominated by Academic Network Operators: 74 (85%) of participants were from the HEIs. As many as 20 (24%) of the 85 workshop delegates were affiliated to University Libraries this year, thanks to the synergy grown with the Mortenson Center for International Library Programs. Following Unilorin with 20 delegates, other contributors of delegates to ngNOG IV were led this time around, by the Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) with 9 delegates and the University of Ibadan with 8 delegates.

Participation rate for women was better than that recorded in 2007 at Kano (13%) and in 2008 at Lagos (14%), but was still low at 19% in ngNOG 2009.

Four tutorials were presented at ngNOG IV: on Fibre Optics; Audio and Video Technolology; Improving web/ database server stability and on high performance computing. Respectively, these were presented by Ahmed Atere of Torque Technologies ; by Adesola Dada of Visions Telecommunications Technologies ; and by Clement Onime of ICTP, Trieste .

The 2009 ngNOG meeting featured key presentations on management of .ng domain by Dewole Ajao of Tinitop Technologies , and on OS dependencies by David Dorman from Index Data .

A Power Logging device, which was commissioned by the Forum and designed and fabricated by the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife , was demonstrated for the first time by Engr Kayode Ayodele. The device monitors and measures periods of mains power outage on a daily basis. Seven such devices will be deployed at various locations in the country, to generate information required for planning power-backup systems; this will also assist in monitoring efficiency of various interventions in the energy sector.

The active participation and contributions of University Librarians at the 2009 ngNOG in Ilorin is a highly significant milestone. Librarians and library staff started a new trend at ngNOG, and instigated a radically new way of thinking about (and delivery of) especially the Strategy, Policy and Management (SPM) and Services tracks of the workshop.

This workshop built-upon foundations laid at the preparatory-ngNOG Workshop that held at the University of Ibadan in July 2006, and the three full editions that were hosted at UniJos, BUK, and Unilag. These were in turn, made possible by earlier editions of the INET and AfNOG workshops at which fora ngNOG instructors were mostly trained over the past 10 years, and will continue to be updated.

With very great appreciation to the Carnegie Corporation of New York and the MacArthur Foundation for supporting this event; to the Network Start up Resource Centre , which donated books and networking equipment; to the Mortenson Center ; all the delegates, observers, and volunteer team of instructors and presenters, and their employers; as well as our Membership, and to the ngNOG 2009 workshop host institution, LOC, Interns and organizers.

As always, we remain deeply grateful to all our supporters and those who inspire us, including the very many who were not specifically mentioned in this summary.


ngNOG 2013 Workshop and Meetings

2013-11-03 00:00
2013-11-08 23:59

The 8th edition of the annual Nigerian Network Operators' Group (ngNOG) Workshop and Meetings will be held this year at the University of Benin (UniBen) from the 3rd - 9th November 2013.

The ancient city of Benin which is known for it's traditions and timeless artworks is the capital of Edo State in southern Nigeria. It is a city approximately 25 miles north of the Benin River and is situated 200 miles by road east of Lagos.

Participants will be accommodated at the Precious Palm Royal Hotel

Thank you as we look forward to your participation at the 8th edition of the ngNOG Workshop and Meetings.

Much ado about a broadcast

I write this to remind us admins of the little things that sometimes cause us big headaches and the importance of monitoring which is very easy to neglect.

While I was onsite last month visiting a BWC member institution, the network admin happened to log into his router and saw one of his local interfaces receiving up to 40Mbps traffic. This is a network that rarely gets 10Mbps on that interface. On closer inspection using the Torch feature of the Mikrotik RouterOS, we found that a handful of local computers were sending unusual broadcast traffic painted to look like netbios and DHCP. As first-aid, we filtered the offensive ports and the impact on the router subsided... only to resurrect on different ports a few minutes later.

Although the attacking entities could change ports, they continued to originate as broadcast traffic so that was one common denominator. You can't just block all broadcast traffic, can you? If you do, true DHCP, Netbios and all other traffic that relies on broadcast announcements wouldn't work. With managed switches however, you can limit the percentage of broadcast traffic that each port can send.

As a better fix, we added broadcast rate limits on all the switches (Cisco and HP) within the campus that allowed us to do so. Yes, one more reason why you should have managed switches. The good news now is that for those institutions that consider themselves financially challenged, you can get Managed 5-port Gigabit switches for less than N20,000. You can be creative and use these on building-to-building links within your network so you can easily isolate/contain segments with anomalies. The ones running Mikrotik SwOS include broadcast-limiting as well as a number of other high end features.

Traffic spewing worms are very common with pirated Windows systems that do not have up to date patches. For those who may not understand the impact of a few unpatched MS Windows computers with worms, consider this:
You have a 24-port switch each with a 100Mbps port. Computers on a number of ports start spewing out traffic at the speed of their network cards. Because it is a directed broadcast, they are sending say 10Mbps to every other computer in the same subnet. All of a sudden, the switch finds itself handling 10Mbps times the number of computers in the subnet. If the switch does not die while processing this spurious traffic, it passes it on to the gateway which presumably has at least one leg in the problematic subnet. If your router is not well configured, it wastes CPU cycles handling the rubbish. I also think routing your networks will help reduce the impacts of directed broadcasts though some people say the overhead of multiple routers is a disadvantage.

In the final analysis, monitoring is good and long term monitoring is even better. Without traffic utilization graphs, nobody would have noticed that Internet bandwidth was not being utilized to the maximum. Without interface monitoring tools, we wouldn't have known which interface to investigate further. Without network segmentation, the building in question wouldn't have been located quickly.

However, without looking into your network often enough, you might not be able to tell the difference between the "normal" and the "abnormal". A step further would be to collect long term data from netflow or traffic-flow capable devices for better visibility into what's going on within your network. Think nfsen, cacti and company. Free and easy to install (sometimes even as virtual machine appliances for the busy/lazy/smart)

Update - November 2009. “Towards an e-learning model for Nigerian HEIs. Lessons from the ICT Maths Initiative

The ICT math team has developed a model for e-learning in Nigerian Higher Education Institutions (HEIs). It was presented at an ICT conference, held at Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU), Ile Ife in September 2009.
At this conference, the University of Jos had a presentation on the “Towards an e-learning model for Nigerian HEIs. Lessons from the ICT Maths Initiative”. The ICT Maths team was also given an entire plenary session to make presentations on “Preparing Nigerians for better communication with the Global Academic Community”. The latter special presentation was very well received. It was the only presentation in the entire conference that was given a standing ovation.
Several institutions including OAU Ife, Bells University, Covenant University, Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University Bauchi, and Federal University of Technology, Minna, indicated interest to partner with UniJos on implementing the Jos model.
Several participants suggested that the National Universities Commission, National Commission for Colleges of Education and similar bodies should be approached to adopt the model nationally.
The ICT mathematics team is pleased to share the paper and a power point presentation on the model. The presentation on the model was again made at the Ilorin ngNOG 2009 event in November 2009.
We shall continue to update you on progress with the initiative.

Eko-Konnect Seminar and Launch

2009-12-15 08:30
2009-12-15 15:00

The Lagos Higher Education Connectivity Project (LHECP) is a multi-institutional project initiated by the University of Lagos in partnership with the Internet eXchange Point of Nigeria and Datasphir Solutions.

Enquiries: foss@unilag.edu.ng

http://www.forum.org.ng/Eko-Konnect

The 2009 ngNOG at Unilorin: A Synergy With The Mortenson Centre

The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign's Mortenson Center for International Library Programs is supporting the participation of 20 University Librarians, Deputy Librarians and Library Information Systems Staff in the ngNOG Workshop and Meeting that will hold at the University of Ilorin, 2009.11.08-15.

Mortenson Centre is also contributing two resource persons to make presentations and interact with delegates to the technology tracks of the 2009 ngNOG Event, as well as with the host-institution's Library Staff. This arrangement was made possible by the MacArthur Foundation and the Carnegie Corporation of New York, who also support the Mortenson Centre.

Senior delegates under this arrangement will mostly be at Strategy, Policy and Management Track along with IT Directors and Coordinators from the same and other institutions. Among the many useful spin-off benefits of such an interaction will be a much better mutual understanding and working relationships between Libraries and IT Directorates.

Growing such interactions (between Libraries and IT Directorates) is important for campus networking and has long been deliberately cultivated and advocated elsewhere. This was the subject of an African planning meeting convening supported by the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation on May 25- May 27, 2009 at the Bibliotheca Alexandrina with participation of the Stanford University Libraries, Council on Library and Information Resources, the Frye Institute and the happily re-incarnated and modernized Library of Alexandria.

The Mortenson Center's (and its funders') preference for building synergies with, and strengthening existing projects and platforms is a development-support best-practice that is very deeply appreciated.

The 2009 Nigerian Network Operators' Group Workshop and Meeting, University of Ilorin, 08-15 November, 2009

The 4th edition of the Annual ngNOG Workshop and Meeting is scheduled to take place at the University of Ilorin , as follows:

Workshop and Meeting Venue:
Geology Complex,
University of Ilorin (Permanent Site), Ilorin, Kwara State

Time: 9:00am Daily
Date: 08 - 15 November, 2009

Event Timetable:
Arrival & Registration: 08 November, 2009 (Sunday)
ngNOG Workshop: 09 - 13 November, 2009 (Monday - Friday)
ngNOG Tutorials: 14 November, 2009 (Saturday)
ngNOG Meeting: 14 November, 2009 (Saturday)
Departure: 15 November, 2009 (Sunday)

Application forms can be filled on line at http://forum.org.ng/ngnog/apply2009.

The closing date for receiving applications is Saturday 19th September 2009.

About the 2009 ngNOG

Syndicate content