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Lagos Lauds SAP, Tips Africa Code Week to Bridge Digital Skills Gap

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(L-r): Olu Familusi, head, Business Operations, West Africa at SAP; Femi Odubiyi, commissioner, Lagos State Ministry of Science and Technology; ‎Permanent Secretary, Lagos State Ministry of Science and Technology‎ and Olajide Ademola Ajayi, Nigeria’s Coordinator of Africa Code Week, at Africa Code Week 2016 held at Lagos State Digital Village, Alausa, recently.
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The Lagos State Government has identified ‘Africa Code Week’ (ACW), a continent-wide initiative to spark the interest of African children, teenagers and young adults in software coding, as a digitally revolutionary approach to get the youths acquainted with the required skills set to face future workplace/ technological developments.

Spearheaded by SAP as part of its social investments to drive sustainable growth in Africa, Africa Code Week (ACW) is the story of hundreds of schools, teachers, ministers, community centres, code clubs, NGOs, businesses and non-profits getting together to give birth to the largest digital literacy initiative ever organized on the African continent.

Speaking at the week-long AfricaCodeWeek 2016 in Lagos, Mr. Femi Odubiyi, Commissioner, Lagos State Ministry of Science and Technology, said that with SAP’s long-term goal through ACW, to empower over 200,000 teachers and positively impacting the lives of five million children and youth within the next 10 years, the programme is appropriate and critical to the State’s plan to empower the youths.

Odubiyi said, “One of the things that drive this government is the action to grow and empower our youths. One of the areas through which we can articulate that, is through the information and communication technologies (ICTs). We are in the era of digital revolution. This government wants to ensure that we do not miss out of that revolution; we want to empower our future leaders who are the youths of today.

“We want to help them to develop their creativity and be able to think out of the box. Today they are using coding tools; tomorrow they will be empowered to do more than that, by developing programs on e-health, security apparatuses and so forth.  What is been imbedded in them today are skills required for the future.”

In reflecting on the ICT/coding curriculum for Schools in the State, the Commissioner said that ICT is consistently changing the environment; hence the State is moving with the trends. “This is the principal reason the State adopts programmes like Africa Code Week. We want to enhance the capacity of our teachers to be relevant”.

To the participating teachers the Commissioner had the following message: “The teachers are the first beneficiaries; thus, they are being empowered. What they are doing now is to get the required skills to develop the future cognitive thinkers.  They are trail blazers who are going to lead the digital revolution in Lagos State”.

Also speaking at the event was Mr. Olu Familusi, head, Business Operations, SAP West Africa, who said that with businesses increasingly digital and globally connected, coding is the new language for individual and economic growth.

With the distinction of being the fastest growing digital consumer market on the planet, Africa continues to quickly embrace new technology and digital trends as estimated. For example, there will be 360 million Smart Phone users in Africa by 2025, there are 100 million African people active on Facebook every month, 40% of African businesses are in the planning stages of a big data project and 31% of all Africans live within 25kms of fibre node.

To this end, Familusi said, “We have to emphasis ‘Digitization, Youth and the Skills Gap in Africa. Today’s millennial generations are truly digital natives. Over the next 25 years, it is estimated that Africa’s working-age population will double to one billion, exceeding that of China and India, with 122 million people to be added to the workforce by 2020. It is also estimated that less than one percent of African children currently leave school with basic coding skills.

“Moving forward, coding skills will almost become like the math and English. That is what we see and we are trying to address same. At this point in time in Africa, less than one percent (less 1%) of school leavers has this skill. So we have this metric around people who are coming on board, huge workforce, but how prepared are they to face the future.”

Africa Code Week (ACW) is aligned with SAP’s skills development program launched in 2013. Investing in IT skills for young people is critical to SAP’s commitment to build sustainable growth in Africa. SAP has launched successful IT skills development programs around the world touching the lives of children and youth at various phases of education from primary to graduate. ACW builds on the success of government driven Code Week across the EU, which SAP strongly supports as a private sector partner.

Speaking on the significance of ACW, Mr. Olajide Ajayi, Nigeria’s Coordinator of Africa Code Week,  emphasized that by sparking interest in creative computing through hands-on, playful learning,

Africa Code Week simplifies the face of coding for the young generation.

“When it comes to accessing higher skills development, training thousands of teachers, parents and educators across 30 African countries and providing access to them online with courses beyond the actual event time allows to multiply efforts and impact.”

Even the results recorded in 2015 speak for themselves. The 2015 edition went viral with over 89,000 youth introduced to coding across 17 countries in 10 days only (over 4 times the initial goal of training 20,000).

What makes ACW unique is that, by sparking interest in creative computing through hands-on, playful learning, Africa Code Week simplifies the face of coding for the young generation.

ACW is aimed at spreading digital literacy across the continent and start shaping tomorrow’s skilled workforce for sustainable growth in Africa.

SAP already invests in Skills for Africa, which provides additional business and IT skills to recent university graduates.

ACW reinforces that commitment to graduates while extending it to primary and secondary students, creating a full lifecycle of skills support for young people in Africa.

Nigeria CommunicationsWeek believes that technology makes life more exciting and helps improve the lives of people around Nigeria and indeed the world. So since 2007, we have devoted our energy to independent reportage of technology and how they affect lives.

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LG Unveils 2nd Free Wash Centre in Port Harcourt

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To promote proper hygiene among Nigerians, LG Electronics has unveiled new state- of- the- art Free Wash Centre tagged Life’s Good with LG Wash for residents of Mgboba community area of Rivers State.

The Wash centre which is the 2nd free laundry outlet in Port Harcourt, Rivers state was launched by top management staff of LG Electronics West Africa operations.

The launch was also graced by Head of Corporate Marketing Division, LG Electronics West Africa operations, Hari Elluru; General Manager, Home Appliances Division, LG Electronics West Africa operations, Mr. Jiung Park; Branch Manager, Fouani Nigeria Limited Port-Harcourt, Mr. Mahmoud Youssef alongside other key staff, media and the public.

It could be recalled that the pilot of the initiative of the Free-Wash initiative was first launched in Ogba area of Lagos state a year ago with the intention of replicating it across strategic locations in the country.

 

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Funke Akindele Launches Dettol’s Newly Commissioned Hand Wash Site At Mushin Market

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Dettol’s Clean Naija initiative started its health journey at Ojuwoye Market, Mushin-Lagos on Monday, May 13th, 2019.

 

The brand ambassador, Funke Akindele-Bello, who is the main driver of the initiative launched the newly commissioned hand wash station at the popular market as part of Dettol’s activities to mark the World Hand Hygiene Day.

 

The World Hand Hygiene Day is a global movement championed by the World Health Organisation (WHO), which, just like the Clean Naija initiative, advocates for better health and hygiene for all.

 

The ultimate goal is to pass the message that regardless of age, ethnicity or socio-economical status, everyone can stay happier and healthier just by cultivating the simple habit of thorough hand washing.

 

Women and mothers who make up the larger percentage of the foot traffic at Ojuwoye market as buyers and traders, were educated on the importance of raising their wards to understand the need for meticulous hand washing.

 

Also, the brand ambassador Funke Akindele-Bello, taught the participants the proper way that health professionals advise that hands should be washed in order for it to be clean and germ-free.

 

Speaking at the launch, Funke Akindele called on the traders at Ojuwoye market, to cultivate the habit of washing their hands thoroughly, especially since they “touch the edible elements that go into homes and make up what the whole family would eventually eat”.

 

Also present at the launch was Alhaja Mufuliat A. Adebunmi, the Iya Oloja, Odi-Olowo/Ojuwoye, she expressed her enthusiasm for the commissioned hand wash site because it marked the beginning of a healthier community.

 

RB Nigeria, through its Dettol brand, already have a number of programs committed to educating Nigerians on better health practices.

 

They include: The School Hygiene Program, through which RB has educated over seven million children on proper hand hygiene habits over the past 7 years, and the New Mum’s Program, through which RB has educated over five million pregnant and new mothers on hygienic practices to protect them during the pre- and post- phases of their pregnancies.

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What You Need to Know About Nordic-Nigeria Connect

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The Nordic Embassies in Nigeria, comprising of Sweden, Norway, Finland and Denmark are collaborating on the second edition of Nordic Days in Nigeria: Nordic Nigeria Connect – Innovating for Change.

The event will take place at Radisson Blu, Victoria Island, Lagos, on 22-23 May 2019.

The Vice-President H.E. Yemi Osinbajo has been invited to open the event on Wednesday 22 May.

Nordic-Nigeria Connect is a unique opportunity for partnership between Nordic and Nigerian actors to innovate for change.

Target groups and beneficiaries of this initiative are Nordic and Nigerian companies, investors, government representatives and other interested organisations.

In Lagos, world-class Nordic innovation culture meets the Lagosian thriving entrepreneurial scene with the largest number of tech hubs in Africa.

More than 30 Nordic companies from several sectors, including education, transport and energy, are participating in the event.

During the past decades, the Nordic countries have developed a world-class innovation scene, in everything from industrial robots, education tools, transport solutions and energy efficiency to leadership and business models. With a total population of less than 30 million, the track record of the four countries is impressive.

Finland has given birth to the world’s best (and free) education system. Sweden is home to innovations such as Bluetooth, Skype and Spotify, and its capital Stockholm is currently producing the highest number of so-called ‘unicorns’ (or billion-dollar tech companies) per capita after Silicon Valley.

Norway is the home to one of the world’s largest funds – The Government Pension Fund Global (Oil Fund) – with stakes in more than 9 000 companies worldwide, including the likes of Apple, Microsoft and Samsung.

Norway is also innovating technology for oceans industries with Equinor in the lead. Denmark is at the forefront with innovations in the food, agriculture and processing sector with companies like Arla Foods/Dano.

Nigeria is gradually emerging as a hotbed of innovations cutting across the financial services, agriculture, hospitality and entertainment.

The efforts to diversify the Nigerian economy, job creation, rural and inclusive development requires innovative solutions.

The power of collaboration and co-creation is key. Nordic-Nigeria Connect seeks to combine the ideas and solutions from the Nordic countries and Nigeria, with participation by companies, innovation hubs and financing instruments during the two-day event.

The event will open on Wednesday 22 May. During the first day, best innovative practices in Nigeria and in Nordic countries will be shared.

Thematic sessions will focus on Innovation in Learning and Innovation in Transportation.

During Thursday 23 May, focus will be on sharing experiences within the theme Innovation in the Energy Sector, both in oil and gas as well as in renewable energy, and discussing Access to Finance from Nordic financing solutions.

As part of Nordic-Nigeria Connect, the Nordic Embassies will also host evening programs showcasing innovation within fashion and music.

The Finnish fashion designer Marita Huurinainen and the Swedish music artists Sabina Ddumba and Kim Cesarion will collaborate with Nigerian talents in open sessions on Wednesday and Thursday evening respectively.

The evening sessions are open to the public and will also take place at Radisson Blu, Victoria Island, Lagos.


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