The Founder and Chief Executive Officer, (CEO), of Juli Foundation, Joy Ogiator, has made public the intention of the foundation to empower and train Nigerian students on computer application. This intention was made public through a statement personally issued by the CEO, who insisted that technology alongside its development has become the mainstay globally. The ‘Train A Child’ initiative which is one of the initiative of the Juli Education Foundation in 2018 successfully trained about 50 kids in Nasarawa State on the use of desktop, proficiency in the use of Microsoft packages and how to surf the net, and with 7 of the kids being absorbed for advanced training in renowned ICT training institutes. Sanwo-Olu vows to deepen partnership with NYSC on skills acquisition(Opens in a new browser tab) Furthermore the initiative seeking to encourage young girls who had passion for the tech sector, trained and gifted laptops to young girls coming mainly from low – income households. These were teenagers who had passion and desire to pursue careers in the tech space, but had no gadget or platform to begin with. Earlier in April 2019, the foundation with its array of young volunteers moved their train to Rivers State to empower and train school children on the use of computers and basic ICT skills. The Foundation believes that with this trainings and empowerment, Nigerian young generation will be given an escape route to financial freedom and also contribute to growth in the country’s economy. Ogiator who noted that the ICT growth or what could be regarded as basic computer knowledge has become massive and glaring to the extent that advanced and civilized countries are aiming to grow their technology to 5G, posited that, “While the rest of the world is steadily advancing in its use of computers, the average Nigerian is still grappling with the use of basic computer gadgets, a bulk of Nigerian population do not even have an idea what a computer machine looks like. “In fact it is rather appalling to say the least, that Nigeria and the Nigerian youths ineptitude for technology has over the years been a sour journey, so much that our leaders and ‘supposed technocrats’ marvel at the sight of simple technological prowess, a feat teenage children in Asia and Europe can easily conquer while in Junior school.” While suggesting that Nigeria’s older population could be pardoned over their lack of interest for technology, Ogiator insisted that the Foundation will not turn blind eye to the ignorance many of the Nigerian youths have towards computer. The CEO equally pointed out that the  tertiary entrance examination, put together by the Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB), has been variously condemned over the execution and utilisation of the Computer Based Test (CBT) on candidates who had no knowledge on the use of computers. According to her, “Despite JAMB’s efforts to educate candidates prior to the test, it was recorded that millions of candidates during the examination had no basic knowledge of computer, and therefore either didn’t know their way around a keyboard, or have no idea about moving a mouse. “If you think this is the worst you have seen, then you would be stunned when you see youths who cannot operate an android phone. “It is even more depressing to realize that in this age of technological advancement, most Nigerians do not even have an email. “The Nigerian government in 2018 stated that the country’s tech space is projected to create 3 million jobs and could generate $88 billion for the economy by 2021. “Furthermore the country’s minister for industry, Trade and Investment Dr. Okey Enelamah, noted further that the government had said it would create an enabling environment where digital economy opportunities are not just theoretical but realizable.” The Foundation’s boss expressed sadness that the realisation of such projection by the Nigerian government seems oblique, given a situation where there are no established policies to guide towards the survival and progress of tech operations in Nigeria. Going down memory lane, Ogiator explained that, “On July 17, 2011, the then President of Nigeria, Dr Goodluck Ebele Jonathan created a new Ministry of Communication Technology. This ministry had the mandate of producing an ICT policy, and also was expected to harmonize the various existing laws dealing on ICT. An ad hoc committee was formed and thereafter produced a 55 page document on the National Information Communication Technology Policy Draft. “I particularly was surprised that in the 55 page document, there was no mention of ICT education. “In a country where university libraries are dumping grounds for old books and journals, where students studying computer science graduate without seeing the internal components of a desktop; we also have leaders who do not see the importance of educating students on computer application, a course that should take root even from the primary school level. “I mean if having a youthful generation that is ignorant of ICT isn’t enough catastrophe, how is it that our leaders also do not see the need to inculcate this development tendencies into them. “Students as early as those in primary schools needs to be exposed to basic computer skills so that generations to come won’t remain in the dark while the rest of the world moves with the trend. “Kenya, Rwanda, and countries in Northern and Southern Africa are becoming ICT compliant, countries Nigeria are far richer than are exposing their populace to new trends, yet Nigeria, the giant of Africa seems reluctant to follow suit. “Nigeria have not, as a matter of urgency taken the issue of ICT compliance among children and youths very seriously, and that needs to change.”

9jainsider.com

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