Group Seeks Govt, IT Hubs’ Collaboration

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A group, Working to Advance African Women (WAAW) in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) education has called for collaboration between government and Information Technology hubs to sensitise citizens on their importance.
The Programme Support Associate of the foundation Mrs Sefumi Obayan, made the call in an interview with newsmen in Abuja, Wednesday.
According to her, Information Communication Technology (ICT) has opportunities to offer to citizens which can generate income as well as improve the economy.
“We need more public enlightenment in areas where ICT activities are less; we need to work with key stakeholders like the government, to ensure that the citizens harness the opportunities in ICT.
“We need to build the capacity of the citizens. ICT is growing fast, and some people limit ICT to the use of social media.
“The government needs to demystify this belief, expose the citizens to the opportunities ICT have to offer and partner with information technology hubs, to build the capacity of the citizens,” she said.
The programme support associate said that the group was organising training, and was looking out for states and areas to work with them for the development of ICT.
Obayan said that the group was recruiting trainees from the 36 states of the federation, who in turn would train others to ensure ICT training penetration.
“Our outreach is yielding expected result because we emphasise on training the trainers; those who will go out to reach people the foundation cannot reach.
“Recently, we got information that a secondary school in Warri, Delta, is building a candy dispenser and balloon-powered boat.
“It is impressive; it shows that we are making impact to not just those that we train, but also on those the trainees have trained,” she said.
She said that ICT was growing at a fast pace with increased numbers of technology hubs in the country.
“ICT is spreading fast in the country because in 2013, we had just two IT hubs; but at the moment, we have about 45 hubs across Nigeria.
“We have IT hubs in places like Jos and Kaduna, where we think ICT will ordinarily not reach; this shows that we are promoting ICT in Nigeria and people are accepting it,” Obayan said.
WAAW Foundation trains girls, women in Africa on web development, ICT skills, train STEM teachers, among other mandates.