President Bola Tinubu has appointed Khalil Suleiman Halilu, a 32-year-old tech innovator and businessman, as the new Executive Vice Chairman and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the National Agency for Science and Engineering Infrastructure (NASENI).
This appointment, approved by President Tinubu on Friday, marks a significant departure from the convention and underscores the administration’s commitment to fostering technological advancement and youth inclusion in governance.
Khalil Suleiman Halilu’s appointment comes with an initial term of five years, in accordance with the relevant sections of the NASENI Act, 2014. His youthfulness and extensive experience as an innovator and technology expert position him to lead NASENI into a new era of growth and innovation.
The announcement was made by the Presidential Media Adviser, Ajuri Ngelale, who also confirmed the termination of Dr. Bashir Gwandu’s tenure as the EVC/CEO of NASENI.
The National Agency for Science and Engineering Infrastructure (NASENI), established in 1992, plays a pivotal role in advancing Nigeria’s technological capabilities and contributing to its economic growth. NASENI’s mandate includes conducting research, development, and manufacturing activities in various technological sectors to promote national economic well-being and self-reliance.
According to a profile on EverybodyWiki, Khalil Suleiman Halilu, born on October 29, 1990, is a Nigerian businessman and innovator known for founding West Africa’s first eco-themed technology hub. He also chairs the Centre For Civic, Citizen’s Welfare And Community Development (CWCD Africa), a non-governmental organisation with a focus on health, education, transparency, environment, peace, sustainability, and inclusive development. Khalil is associated with several companies, including Scirrocco International Limited and Gongoni Company Limited, which are part of a conglomerate with more than 300 products in African markets.
Khalil’s educational background includes a BSc in Business Administration and a master’s degree in International Business from the University of Hertfordshire, England. He has a diverse work history, including serving as an administrative clerk at Archimode & Associates and working as the Chief Operating Officer at Scirrocco International Limited.
One of Khalil’s notable achievements is the introduction of the pioneer election monitoring system in Nigeria known as “Zabe,” which recorded significant user growth and a three per cent disparity from INEC-affirmed results during the 2019 general elections. He is a strong advocate for the prospects of e-voting and home-grown technology solutions for development in Africa.
Khalil also founded two startups, ShapShap Logistics and The CANs Park, with a focus on delivery services and fostering innovation in the tech industry. The CANs Park, dubbed West Africa’s first eco-friendly tech hub, provides workspaces, technical and strategic consultation, and social innovation matchmaking.
Khalil Halilu’s appointment to head NASENI has been met with enthusiasm and high expectations from the Nigerian public, as he brings a wealth of experience and fresh perspectives to the agency. It is seen as a significant step towards harnessing the potential of Nigeria’s youth to drive technological advancements and economic growth.
Tinubu’s administration has received high ratings for appointing young people to his cabinet and other strategic positions. This includes 36-year-old Betta Edu from Cross River, who is also one of the women on the list alongside Nkiruka Onyejiocha (Abia), Doris Uzoka (Imo), Uju Kennedy Ohanenye (Anambra), and Stella Okotete (Delta).