50 persons living with disabilities in Enugu are currently undergoing five days of training on Information Technology at the Enugu State Tech Hub and Youth Innovation Center.
The training which started on Monday, 1st day of March is an initiative of the Ministry of Communications and Digital Economy, implemented by the National Information Technology Development Agency, NITDA, in partnership with the Enugu State Government to empower persons living with disabilities, PLWDs, through IT entrepreneurship, policies, and solutions so as to enable them to live productively with a good sense of inclusion in the IT ecosystem, their immediate society, and the country.
Speaking during the opening ceremony of the 5-day training programme in Information Technology and Entrepreneurship, Obi Kama affirmed the goal of the training is in keeping with the Enugu State Government’s passion and commitment to IT, innovation, and youth empowerment.
Obi Kama who is the Commissioner for Science and Technology in Enugu further disclosed the state recently established the Enugu Technology Hub and Youth Innovation Centres in Enugu Urban and Obollo Afor, Udenu Local Government Area knowing the exigencies of IT in development.
“The unexpected outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated the transition to more digitally enabled lifestyles and system of working globally.”
“Also, the state government is taking a proactive step to create programmes for Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) skills development to reduce the risk of massive labour substitution and endemic unemployment, especially in this COVID-19 era, by enabling the youth to leverage on the new entrepreneurial and economic opportunities associated with digital economy,” Kama revealed.
Eulogizing the state as a home to 7 innovation hubs, 16 Tertiary Institutions with over 20 campuses, Kama proudly pointed out that the 1st Computer System in Nigeria was assembled in Enugu at ASUTECH now Enugu State University of Science and Technology, ESUTH.
He then urged NITDA to consider siting its South East Zonal Office in Enugu, in view of the state’s background as the historic capital of the zone and its inherent potentials as an educational and scientific centre.
“Enugu state is willing to partner NITDA by making available the entire required infrastructures to reactivate the South-East Zonal Office at Enugu, hence we ask you to kindly indicate your requirements as soon as possible to the State Government”.
“I appreciate the inclusive nature of this training in bridging the Digital divide among PLWDs in the South-east, especially Enugu State and I am convinced that this training will mitigate the existing digital divide and foster the digital inclusion of Persons Living With Disabilities within an educational context as well as within the society as a whole”, he said.
In his remarks, the Special Assistant to the Governor on ICT, Hon. Emeka Ani, told the participants that society has shifted from an economy based on commodities and manual labour to an economy based on knowledge and highly qualified human capital.
“Therefore, employees need to be prepared to shift jobs and to be flexible in acquiring skills,
“Information and communication technology is prevalent now in the workplace and there is a high demand for ICT-proficient employees with technical know-how, information, communication, collaboration, critical thinking, creativity, and problem-solving skills; this is why this training is very important to our youths”, Ani said.
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