Omobola Johnson


Nigerian Technocrat

Nigerian technocrat Omobola Olubusola Johnson, born on June 28, 1963, serves as the Alliance for Affordable
Internet’s Honorary Chairperson (A4AI). She previously served as President Goodluck Jonathan’s first Minister of Communication Technology. Johnson received her primary education at the International School, Ibadan in the state of Oyo after being born a few years after Nigeria gained its independence. She then went on to complete her undergraduate studies in Electrical and Electronic Engineering at the University of Manchester in the UK.

She received her education at King’s College London, the International School Ibadan, and the University of
Manchester (BEng, Electrical and Electronic Engineering) (MSc, Digital Electronics). She graduated from Cranfield University with a doctorate in business administration (DBA). In 1985, Johnson began her professional career in management consulting at the Arthur Andersen/Andersen Consulting (now Accenture) office in London. She was accepted into the Accenture Partnership in September 2000, and from 2000 to 2007 she was responsible for the financial services practice.

She held the position of country managing director for Accenture in Nigeria prior to being appointed as a minister. Since 1985, when Accenture was still Andersen Consulting, she has been employed there. Johnson is the first-ever head of the nation’s communication technology ministry, which was established as a part of the Nigerian government’s transformation agenda.

In 2001, Johnson helped found the women’s group- “WIMBIZ”. Since accepting her first government position as a minister in 2011, she has received numerous accolades from the general public. This comes after her ministry’s many successes, the most notable of which was the NigComSat-IR satellite launch. This has complemented the nation’s efforts to provide more bandwidth and fiber connectivity. More than 700 personal computers have been distributed by the ministry under her direction to secondary schools as part of the School Access Programme (SAP first)’s phase. Approximately 193 tertiary institutions in the nation now have internet access as part of the Tertiary Institution Access Programme (TIAP), and 146 communities have access to Community Communication Centers that have been placed across the nation.

omobolaA partnership with the Nigerian Central Bank to promote financial and digital inclusion through the Post Office infrastructure; In collaboration with the NUC, World Bank, and TetFund, a 10Gbs Fibre Optic Network will link Nigerian Universities to the larger research and educational communities; facilitating the e-Government initiative with more than 86,000 government-issued email addresses, 250 websites hosted on platform, and 382 MDAs connected in Abuja and other regions of the nation; establishing the necessary conditions for local tablet development that is comparable to the iPad; signing a memorandum of understanding with Nokia to set up a lab in Nigeria to support the national mobile software market; National Council on Information and Communication Technology’s inaugural ceremony with state / FCT Commissioner of ICT as members.

Johnson became Nigeria’s first minister of communication technology when Jonathan appointed him in 2011. She oversaw the National Broadband Plan’s development and implementation during her four years in the ministry, as well as the government’s groundbreaking participation in a regional venture capital fund and a network of start-up incubators. She created the ambitious 2013-2018 National Broadband Plan for the nation and provided the necessary organization and work to reduce the price of internet access in Nigeria.

In September 2013, President Goodluck Jonathan reorganized his cabinet, and she was given the additional duty of overseeing the work of the Federal Ministry of Science and Technology. The nation also launched the
NigComSat-IR satellite while she was in office (Nigerian Communication Satellite). Johnson joined the board of the World Wide Web Foundation in September 2018. She became a board member of MTN Nigeria Communications one year later, in September 2019.

Johnson became the first female chair of the Guinness Nigeria Plc board on July 1, 2021. However, the eminent figure whose name has appeared on multinational platforms and international organizations has broken similar records before. She joins the group of exceptional women making an impact in their fields, but Johnson stands out due to her extensive leadership background and unwavering pursuit of excellence.

She is also the founding chairperson and trustee of Women in Management in Business and Public Service
(WIMBIZ), a non-governmental organization she co-founded in 2001, and a trustee of the World Economic
Forum’s Future of the Internet Initiative. Additionally, a fellow of the Aspen Global Leadership Network, the
engineer and ICT expert. Between August 2010 and July 2011, she worked as an independent director for the
now-defunct Diamond Bank Plc. In 2011, she also held the position of director at Custodian and Allied Insurance Plc.

One of Nigeria’s boardroom experts, Omobola Johnson has achieved remarkable feats while defying expectations and setting new standards. Johnson has covered a wide range of topics, including those in and outside of Nigeria, including politics, business, and not-for-profit organizations. She overcame mediocrity to establish high standards as a pioneer of many trains, becoming a woman of many firsts.

Omobola is currently the chairman of Custodian and Allied Insurance Limited and a non-executive director of
MTN, and Guinness Nigeria PLC. She holds a senior partner position at the TLCOM Venture
Capital firm. She is currently a member of the Lagos Business School (LBS) advisory board as well as the
international advisory board of the UN University Institute of Computing and Society in Macau.

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