Thursday, September 01, 2005

Nigeria ready for Software Freedom Day-05

STAKEHOLDERS in the Information and Communications Technology (ICT) in the country said all is now set for the world Software Freedom Day (SFD) come Saturday, September 10, 2005.

SFD is a global grassroots effort to promote the use of Free and Open Source Software (FOSS) with the goal to raise public awareness of the benefits of using high quality FOSS in education, government, homes and businesses and other aspects of life.

It is a date set aside for this year’s celebration by the non-profit organization propagating the penetration and usage of FOSS under the aegis of Software Freedom International (SFI), which provides guidance in organizing SFD.

He said the event would take place at the Lagos Digital Village, 46 Coattes Street, Ebute Metta, Lagos on Saturday, the 10th of September this year.

Already volunteer teams around the world would organise their own SFD events to impart accordingly to their own communities.

This year’s SFD, according to the coordinator of the nation’s team, and Executive Secretary, Knowledgehouseafrica.org, Mr. Sunday Olukayode Akanni, is the second of its kind and is significant because 2005 marks the 20th anniversary of the FOSS.

Champion Infotel calls to mind that FOSS was initiated by Mr. Richard Stallman from Massachuset Institute of Technology (MIT) when he started the Free Software Foundation in 1985.

It is also on record that more than 70 volunteer teams worldwide registered last year for the implementation of the SFD, which was the inaugural celebration.

This year, Mr. Akanni said SFD website has recorded over 191 volunteer teams, whereas over 25 of this figure are Africans.

Some of the African countries include Nigeria, Ghana, Togo, South Africa, Uganda, Kenya, Benin Republic, Cote ‘D Ivoire, Sierra Leone, Mali, Cameroon and Burundi.

He also enlightened that SFD is targeted at effectively involving focused team drawn from families, government, small business, big business and educational institutions.

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