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Facebook launches Reels Ads on Instagram across SSA

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Facebook has announced the launch of Reels Ads in 25 African countries that had the Reels feature on Instagram. Reel Ads will enable businesses on Instagram to reach greater audiences besides allowing people to discover inspiring new content from brands and creators.

Prior to this launch, Reels Ads was successfully tested in select countries globally. Reels it to 25 countries across SSA including; Nigeria, Ghana, Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Uganda, Tunisia, Swaziland, South Africa, Seychelles, Senegal, Namibia, Morocco, Mali, Malawi, Libya, Lesotho, Guinea, Egypt, Cape Verde, Cameroon, Burkina Faso and Algeria.

Commenting about the launch, Jocelyne Muhutu, Facebook’s Strategic Media Partnerships Manager, SSA described Reels as the best place on Instagram to reach people who don’t follow you and a growing global stage where brands and creators can be discovered by anyone.

“We see Reels as a great way for people to discover new content on Instagram, and so ads in Reels are a natural fit. Brands of all sizes can take advantage of this new creative format in an environment where people are already being entertained,” she added.

Reels ads will be full screen and vertical, similar to ads in Stories, and will appear in between individual Reels. As with regular Reels content, these ads will loop and can be up to 30 seconds. People can comment, like, view, save and share Reels ads.

Reels ads will appear in the most popular places to access Reels content. This includes the Reels tab, Reels in Stories, Reels in Explore and Reels in your feed. Once a user taps into a reel from Stories, Feed, the Reels Tab or Explore, they will enter a viewer that exclusively shows reels that scroll vertically.

Just like any other ad on Instagram, Instagram will also provide people with controls on the Reels ads they see. If people see an ad they don’t like, they can skip the ad, or tap the menu on the post to hide or report it.

Infotech

Nigeria’s IT sector will remain strong inspite of challenges – DG NITDA

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The Director-General of the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), Kashifu Inuwa has stated that Nigeria’s IT sector will remain strong inspite of challenges.

Speaking during an event ‘CONNECT THE DOT’S CONFERENCE’, with the Theme ”Igniting Resilience and Empowering Youth”, which was held in Abuja, the DG said the agency is focusing on building resilience in the face of challenges for the development of Nigeria’s information technology sector.

He stated that NITDA is working on various initiatives to ensure that the country’s IT industry remains strong and resilient in the face of challenges.

“We must be resilient in the face of challenges, and this is particularly important in the IT industry,” Inuwa said.

“We are working on various initiatives to promote resilience in the sector, including the establishment of IT hubs in universities, and the promotion of local content development.”

He also highlighted the importance of digital transformation in building resilience, stating that NITDA is working to ensure that more Nigerians have access to digital technologies and skills, which will enable them to adapt to the changing digital landscape.

He further reiterated the agency’s commitment to building a strong and sustainable IT industry in Nigeria, and pledged to work with relavant bodies towards achieving its goals.

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NCC pledges support to Meta on digital economy initiatives

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By Blessing Emmanuel, Abuja

The Nigerian Communi cations Commission (NCC) has pledged its readiness to support digital economic initiatives of investors, including Meta (formerly Facebook), that align with Nigeria’s vision for a robust digital economy.

During a visit to the NCC’s headquarters in Abuja, a delegation from Meta, led by Kojo Boakye, the company’s Vice President for Africa, the Middle-East, and Turkey, met with Dr. Aminu Maida, the Executive Vice Chairman and Chief Executive Officer (EVC/CEO) of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC).

The NCC EVC emphasised the importance of compliance with industry laws, regulations, and guidelines for creating a level-playing field that encourages healthy competition and sustainable growth in the Nigerian telecoms sector.

Boakye congratulating Dr. Maida on his appointment, shared Meta’s ongoing efforts to land the 2Africa submarine cable in Nigeria.

According to Boakye, “The 45,000-kilometer-long cable, scheduled to go live in 2023, will be one of the world’s largest subsea cable projects, interconnecting Europe (via Egypt), Asia (via Saudi Arabia), and Africa.

“With a design capacity of up to 180 terabytes per second (Tbps), the 2Africa cable aims to deliver much-needed Internet capacity and reliability across Africa, supporting the growth of 4G, 5G, and fixed broadband access.”

Boakye sought NCC’s support in navigating legal and regulatory processes for the cable’s landing in Nigeria, emphasising the positive impact it will have on connectivity and affordability.

The Meta delegation also outlined plans to simultaneously land the 2Africa cable in Lagos and Akwa-Ibom States through a consortium.

Boakye emphasised that this approach aims to connect those currently without access while enhancing and providing affordable access for those already connected.

Responding, Dr. Maida assured Meta of NCC’s commitment to supporting initiatives that align with Nigeria’s digital economy agenda and welcomed the potential benefits the 2Africa cable could bring to the country’s telecommunications landscape.

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Minister Tijani reels out 100 days achievement, hails Tinubu

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The Minister of Communications, Innovation and Digital Economy has reeled out his 100 days achievements as a Minister of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

In a recent address, Minister Tijani expressed gratitude to President Bola Ahmed Tinubu GCFR for the unique honour bestowed upon him, and highlighted the collective accomplishments, outlining the path ahead for the Ministry.

Commending the unwavering support from directors, agency heads, and the entire team (NCC, NITDA, NigComSat, NDPC, NIPOST, GBB, etc), he emphasised the dynamic and cohesive force that has been shaped within the Ministry during this period.

Highlighting his achievements in office, Dr Tijani said, “The Ministry’s mandate, structured around five pillars – Knowledge, Policy, Infrastructure, Innovation, Entrepreneurship & Capital, and Trade – forms the core of the Strategic Blueprint. This blueprint guides the Ministry’s role in realizing the President’s Renewed Hope Agenda.

“In the first 100 days, the Knowledge pillar has been instrumental in driving initiatives, most notably the Three Million Technical Talent (3MTT) program. With over 1.6 million talented Nigerians applying in a month, partnerships, including a N1 Billion commitment from IHS Nigeria and UNDP’s funding for 3,000 internships, have significantly amplified the impact.

“The National AI Research Scheme received 2,118 proposals, showcasing the depth of talent in applying technology to critical sectors. Collaborations with the Raspberry Pi Foundation led to the establishment of Code Clubs in 17 locations, fostering technological talent from a young age.

“Under the Policy pillar, collaboration with NITDA resulted in the launch of the Startup Support and Engagement Portal, aligning with the Startup Act. White Papers on top AI talent of Nigerian descent and the 1:10:100 Implementation approach outline strategic directions.

“The Infrastructure pillar achieved milestones, including mapping over 2,500 innovation spaces and revamping NigComSat’s platforms. Extending coverage to underserved locations aligns with the commitment to providing digital opportunities. Engagements at global forums such as the Mobile World Congress and ITU-World Radio Conference underscore Nigeria’s global presence.”

On innovation, entrepreneurship and capital, Dr Tijani noted that “significant partnerships were forged under the Innovation, Entrepreneurship & Capital (IEC) pillar, including the $116 million financing for AFD’s I-DICE program and a $100 million Global AI partnership.”

“Initiatives like the 4IRTA platform and the Young Innovative Builders program demonstrate dedication to leveraging technology for sustainable development,” he narrated.

The Minister explained further that the achievements of his 100 days in office were a result of collective efforts that have shaped the first 100 days.

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