Infotech Programme Youths Laud FCT Minister, UNESCO, For Empowerment Opportunity

Participants in Youth Mobile IT Training in class and in work groups.

Participants in an 8-month “Youth Mobile” Information Technology training programme have unanimously lauded the FCT Minister, Malam Muhammad Musa Bello, for the opportunity afforded them to upgrade their skills and acquire capacity to own businesses.

The ongoing capacity development programme which involves 400 youths and women selected from the six Area Councils, is being organized by the UNESCO in partnership with the FCT Administration. Beneficiaries are expected to acquire various competences on ICT, especially mobile telephony apps.

One of the participants, Jalila Shuaibu, a graduate of Civil Engineering of the Federal University of Technology, Minna, said the Training has opened a new world of opportunities for her. Ms Shuaibu disclosed that she was already writing her business plan to set up an enterprise that would leverage the skills acquired in managing operating systems, building Local Area Networks (LAN) and handling computer assembly among others.

Another beneficiary, Ms Quincy Emem expressed joy that she can now build websites using HTML, CSS and java script. Emem believes she is on course to creating jobs for herself and for other young people.

The FCT Minister, Malam Muhammad Musa Bello, while flagging off the programme last month had noted that the Administration was doing this because it believes that when it gets the youth ready for the 21 century, it gets the city ready for the future.

His words “the programme which is being powered with the support of Cisco and Microsoft is designed to help participants acquire capacity in the design of mobile apps, networking as well as converting what they have learnt into private businesses. Those who have businesses already would be taught how to deploy mobile technology and IT networking into their businesses.”

Speaking to news men, Dayo Akindolani of McAnderson Consulting, the facilitators of the training, revealed that the first set of participants numbering 400 have been grouped into four batches of hundred. Each batch, Mr. Akindolani explained, will undergo a two-month training which started in July to end in August, paving way for the next set.

The first batch of 100, who were already into the middle of the exercise, he revealed, have shown impressive performance in the way they have responded to the training. The facilitator expressed hope that the future of the city is brighter as these learners would impact the job market positively with cutting edge skills.

The course is taking place in the FCT’s modern IT laboratory, which has been equipped with over 100 cutting edge computers.

It could also be recalled that FCT entered into the IBM Smarter Cities Challenge this year. The initiative was aimed at leveraging technology solutions to improve efficiency of cities. In it FCT aimed to tackle top strategic challenges with the assistance of IBM’s expertise and technology. FCT hoped that participation would enable its officials pick up vital lessons towards leveraging Smart City competences for effective public policies.

In the same vein, there is an ongoing 21-day workshop for ICT-based instruction delivery for the Nigeria/Korea Model School in Abuja as well as 150 other teachers selected from various schools across the FCT. The training is facilitated the Korean International Cooperation Agency (KOICA) at the instance of the FCT Administration.