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NITDA to close gaps in technology sectors

The National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) at the weekend in Lagos restated its commitment to bridging the existing gap in the technology sector.

Its Director-General, Mallam Kashifu Inuwa, who gave the commitment at the closing ceremony where over 300 kids trained at the STEM Bootcamp for Kids (SB4KIDS), said the event was aimed at bridging the gap that currently exists in the educational sector.

Inuwa said the Stem Bootcamp for Kids triggered NITDA's interest and resonates deeply with ongoing efforts toward implementing the National Digital Economy Policy for Digital Nigeria.

Represented by Mrs Jumoke Alaka, Manager, Southwest Zonal Office, NITDA, Inuwa said NITDA’s mandate is to create a framework for the planning, research, development, and standardization application, coordination, monitoring, evaluation and regulation of Information Technology (IT) practices in Nigeria.

According to him, NITDA remained committed to supporting campaigns to diversify the country’s economy from a resource-based to a knowledge-based one through Information Technology (IT).

``We are indeed proud to be part of this event. It is my pleasure to introduce to you the National Centre for Artificial Intelligence and Robotics (NCAIR), the arm of NITDA meant to drive research and development (R&D) and innovation in the areas of emerging technologies.

“NCAIR is one of NITDA’s special purpose vehicles created to promote research and development on emerging technologies and their practical application in areas of Nigeria’s national interest,’’ he said.

According to him, Kids across the spectrums of the society were trained by NCAIR, a training organ of NITDA on Coding, Artificial Intelligence, Robotics and Drone.

Inuwa said the kids were also trained on Digital Communications, Embedded Systems, the Internet of Things (IoT), Virtual Reality, and 3D requisite skill-set for the 4th Industrial Revolution.

He said as an NCAIR’s catch-them-young initiative, the SB4KIDS is a Bootcamp to inspire young Nigerians in STEM.

He said through the SB4Kids, NCAIR engages youngsters between the age of eight and 16 in an immersive and well-articulated Bootcamp.

According to him, the bootcamp was meant to coach and inspire youngsters to imbibe STEM passion and create an early interest in digital and emerging technologies.

Inuwa said the technologies would hopefully shape the children's future careers in these fields.

He said that NITDA SB4Kids is a yearly initiative conducted during the summer school holidays.

According to him, NITDA SB4KIDS has trained over 200 participants which will broaden the minds of children in critical thinking and high sense of curiosity in science and digital technology.

He said the early involvement in technology and innovation would accelerate the development of the IT sector and create future leaders that will transform the technology space and boost the nation’s digital economy.

Co-founder, Community Innovation Hub, Soji Megbwun, said the kids were picked from the street and trained on technology as training partners for NITDA.

He said the curriculum was designed by NITDA to achieve the Sustainable Development Goal and the training was for two weeks.

Partner, TEF Community Innovation Hub, Mr. Mayowa Ajiboye, appreciated NITDA for bringing the training to Alimosho Local Government Area, a suburb of Lagos that is underserved in technology, adding that the kids have been impacted.

A native of the Community Innovation Hub, Oluwadamilola Davies, developed a Smart Walker which enables the virtually impaired to detect danger and improve their lives.

Davies said the project reflected the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) which is good health and well-being and one reducing inequality.

Ajibola Daniel, 11 years old, also spoke about his project- cartoon animator to project the SDG of ‘no poverty’. He said the cartoon animator would help educate people how to reduce wastefulness.

More than 10 children with outstanding projects were awarded with laptops and more than 200 others were given certificates.

 

 

 

 

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