The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has carried out sensitization of young women and girls on the importance of Information and Communications Technology (ICT) as a tool for digital empowerment across the six geo-political zones of the country.
The nationwide sensitization campaign which was part of line-up of activities to mark the 10th anniversary of Girls in ICT Day 2021 with the theme ‘Connected girls, creating brighter futures’ was held simultaneously in Abuja and across the zonal offices of the commission.
Speaking at the event at Nobel Hall Academy, Abuja, the head, internet governance, NCC, Tokunbo Oyeleye, said the annual event was a testimony to the importance the commission placed on the need to expose girls and young women to more opportunities in ICT as well as address their cybersecurity concerns.
Conveying the felicitations of the executive vice chairman of the commission, Prof. Umar Danbatta, Oyeleye said the theme of this year’s edition aptly underscored the growing importance of the need for an environment that encourages young women to acquire requisite digital skills to attain their future aspirations.
“The commission aligns with the ITU’s Resolution 70, which advocates gender mainstreaming and promotion of gender equality, empowerment of women through ICT.
“The commission has consistently used the platform to encourage Nigerian girls to venture into ICT careers. Hence, we sensitise students in secondary schools on how the NCC, as the telecom sector regulator, is creating a safer space for girls, by raising awareness on digital skills, gender-based violence as well as developing initiatives for the protection of children and girls’ rights online,” she said.
Oyeleye stated further that the annual event also resonated with the child online protection (COP) drive of the commission aimed at collectively creating measures for a safer online environment for children. The commission through various forms of support and participation in activities that educate children on ways to keep safe online has been advancing the objective to promote and safeguard national interests, safety and security.
Similarly, a senior manager at NCC, Yisa Elizabeth, who led the commission’s team to Government Girls’ Science School (GSS), Kuje, encouraged the young girls to take advantage of the numerous opportunities in ICT for their personal and career development.
Other locations where the commission carried out the sensitization include Girls’ Academy Senior Secondary School, Lagos Island and Girls’ Senior Secondary Grammar School, Obalende Keffi, Lagos State; Model Girls’ Secondary School, Rumueme and Government Girls’ Secondary School Rumuokwuta, Port Harcourt, Rivers State; Kano Capital Secondary School (Girls’ section), Matan Fada Road, Nasarawa and Mairo Tijjani Girls’ Science and Technical College, Kano State.
The participants unanimously commended the NCC for the elaborate enlightenment programme, which they said was very beneficial as it stimulated their interest and dispelled the negative gender perceptions often associated with ICT.
Science Nigeria reports that Girls in ICT Day is an annual event, and an initiative of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) designed to raise global awareness on empowering and encouraging young women and girls to consider studies and careers in dcience, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).