Blockchain in Nigeria is becoming a familiar phrase. There was indeed a Blockchain and Cryptocurrency Conference in Lagos recently. However, like many other technological breakthroughs, we are slow in catching up with the world around us.
The elimination of the middleman in many transactions will skyrocket the potential of several projects that rely on these transactions. This is what Blockchain technology brings. It heralds a new beginning for internet transactions in the world, and it is no wonder that tech giants like Facebook are dedicating resources to researching this technology.
Blockchain in Nigeria will revolutionise the way many things are done, and that is why we have taken the time to highlight ways that Blockchain is changing the world that Nigeria can take cues from.
How Blockchain Is Changing the World: Lessons for Nigeria
- Record keeping and sharing
Blockchain has enabled cryptocurrencies to secure and share financial records, giving access to only those entitled to such records. Blockchain has the potential to be the future of record keeping and sharing with emphasis on security, trust and multi-authors.
Blockchain in Nigeria can be used to curb corrupt practices when used as the base technology for record keeping and sharing across government departments. For example, financial records can be inputted, kept, traced and assessed by all stakeholders, thereby improving transparency.
More than half of Nigeria’s population is unbanked. This is as a result of many factors, one of which is the unavailability of banks and their services in rural areas. The interesting thing is that several fintech companies are coming up with innovative solutions to these problems. Some of which include mobile money services.
The potential of Blockchain in this sphere is amazing. With the transparency, security and integrity associated with Blockchain, it is no surprise that it was first deployed for cryptocurrencies. Fintech companies around the world are exploring opportunities here already.
A collaboration between innovative Fintech ideas and Blockchain can see Financial inclusion in Nigeria rise.
- Knowledge sharing
Like with records, knowledge sharing is important for any society to grow. Nigeria is poor regarding knowledge base, and often, people have to rely on information from international sources to carry out research and projects in and for Nigeria. This can be solved with Blockchain technology. A system that allows universities, research centres, NGOs, government departments, companies and so on share information without compromising on authenticity will boost several sectors in Nigeria.
It will also allow a unified database that all the relevant stakeholders in Nigeria can access and use to their advantage. Security agencies can share information with banks; banks can share information with government and mobile network providers can provide necessary information to security agencies. Blockchain will allow such interconnectivity.
- Smart Contracts
Smart contracts remove the need for intermediaries. They allow automated functions assigned to parties to a contract with the fulfilment of one party’s obligation triggering the execution of their ‘requirements’ from the contract. For example, an advertiser may no longer need an ad network to help them place ads on the website and dictate their revenue. Blockchain technology allows a system that will manage such transactions, removing the need for intermediaries and guaranteeing trust.
For a country like Nigeria where so many sectors have not even adopted digital technology, starting out on a Blockchain system may be a leap, but a welcome leap all the same. Musicians and content providers, for instance, can directly push their content on content distribution platforms and monitor analytics and revenue in real time.
The interesting thing about Blockchain is that it is still being explored and discovered. However, it has potentials. Blockchain in Nigeria, if explored properly may mean a turnaround, even for governance.
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