To harness the benefits of digital economy, the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), has commenced the South West Zonal Women Information Communication Technology (ICT) training and empowerment in Ekiti State.
The capacity building programme is aimed at closing the Gender Digital Divide, promote job creation, financial inclusion, and provide women with the necessary skills and tools to participate in the digital economy.
The Director-General, NITDA, Kashifu Abdullahi, said the programme is part of the agency’s continuous efforts aimed at implementing key priorities of economic diversification, job creation, investing in Nigerians, and achieving gender balance in economic opportunities.
Abdullahi, who was represented by Director, eGovernment Development and Regulation Department, Dr. Vincent Olatunji, noted that women have unequal access to economic opportunities compared to men, adding that technology can bridge the gap.
He said the 100 women being trained are projected to create 300 direct jobs and over 1000 indirect jobs, adding that meaningful growth can only happen when Nigerians access increased social inclusion, jobs and improved human capital base of the economy.
“Key objectives of the programme include boosting digital literacy, creating jobs, bridging the divide, promoting inclusion, and using technology to address gender imbalance in economic opportunities. Statistics have shown that women’s participation in ICT is less than 24 per cent, and we in NITDA are determined to change this through training programmes for women in addition to the capacity development activities for both genders.”
The first lady of Ekiti State, Bisi Fayemi, said the administration of Dr. Kayode Fayemi, is passionate about gender promotion, particularly women empowerment and promulgation of laws that can tackle socio-cultural and economic impediments against women. “Technology has a lot of benefit, and women in the developing nations have a large proportion of illiteracy in the digital world. This programme can make women active in the world of ICT and enable equal access to innovative ICT concepts,” she said.
The Commissioner for Public Utilities in Ekiti State, Bamidele Faparusi, said the government was finalising a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with private firms, for the laying of fibreoptic wireless cable across the towns and villages in the state for Internet connectivity.