Over 1,353 Graduate From NITDA, ENGAUSA Digital Apprentices’ Programme

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The director-general, National Information Technology Development Agency, Mallam Kashifu Abdullahi (sixth from left) flanked by dignitaries, resource persons and grandaunts during the tech hub graduation ceremony.

Over 1,353 beneficiaries have graduated from Digital Apprentices Programme organised by the ENGAUSA Global Tech Hub in collaboration with the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA). 

In his remarks during the graduation ceremony, the NITDA director-general, Mallam Kashifu Abdullahi, described the acquisition of digital literacy and entrepreneurship as key to the nation’s socio-economic drive, as he emphasised NITDA’s readiness to foster digital literacy and entrepreneurship to create job opportunities for the teeming Nigerian youths. 

During graduation, young Nigerians including almajiris and out-of-school children displayed various talents they learned during the programme, in computer networking, drone technology, CCTV installation and access control, graphics design, electric fencing and smart home automation, advanced smartphones repairs, etc. 

The NITDA boss stated that the training of unlettered youths to master digital skills and other digital services is a milestone in line with the implementation of the National Digital Economy Policy and Strategy (NDEPS) and NITDA’s Strategic Roadmap and Action Plan (SRAP 2021-2024).

With 30 per cent of the participants totalling 400 establishing their startups and some with workforces of 10 employees, the DG expressed his delight at the overall outcome of the training. He said it would propel a reduction in the unemployment rate and alleviate poverty in the country. 

“I am very excited to see this graduation of 1,353 students who participated in the digital literacy programme organised by ENGAUSA, in partnership with NITDA. This further showed that we have talent in Nigeria and talent is the human component of digital technology; therefore, we need to harness the talent for economic prosperity. 

“We are graduating them mostly to promote digital literacy and digital job creation which is part of the Federal Government’s digital economy. Of these 1,353 graduates, about 400 have started their independent businesses, employing others to work under them,” he said.

The DG commended the organisers for their effort in translating technology vocabulary to the local language to ease understanding, adding that most technologically advanced nations like France, Japan, India and China use their mother tongues to teach their young scientists and Nigeria must consider toeing the path.

While reiterating NITDA’s ambitious target of achieving 95 per cent digital literacy, as well as a short-term plan of training one million developers over the next 18 months, Abdullahi gave 100 smart devices, courtesy of NITDA, to the performing students who excelled in various digital skills during the training. 

Earlier in his remarks, the proprietor of ENGAUSA Digital Literacy, Engr. Auwal Ringim said the event aimed at encouraging the development of skills and ideas from inception to actualisation. 

He said the reason for the introduction of the training on programming, video editing, blogging, graphic designs, web design and android development, social media literacy, and digital marketing was to identify natural talents in young persons who had not been to conventional schools to acquire basic digital skill, to make them self-reliant. 

The CEO of ENGAUSA Global Tech Hub, Engr. Mustapha Ringim, while making his remarks, appreciated the support of NITDA towards the successful completion of the scheme. 

He noted that his organisation has achieved a lot by training and graduating 1,700 since the commencement of the scheme in 2019. He said a good number of those who graduated are entrepreneurs, workers in digital-driven firms and renewable energy, while some were freelancers in digital technology. 

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