Operators harp on technology to address Nigeria’s skills gap
With the world tilting to a knowledge-based economy driven by Artificial Intelligence (AI), Internet of Things (IoT), and big data, an AI education platform technology firm, Robo Garden, and other stakeholders, have emphasized the need for Nigeria to invest in technology to address the dearth of skills amongst Nigerian youths.
The President, Robo Garden, Dr. Mohamed Elhabiby, said globally, countries have big issues regarding shortage of skills, with many plagued with high unemployment rate.
He noted that with COVID-19, the situation would get even more challenging and Nigeria cannot afford to lag behind the global trend. Citing a report, he said the skills required for 85 per cent of the job opportunities that would emerge in 2030 are presently not available, saying that going forward, unemployment will not only be a problem to graduates, but for the future students.
Elhabiby, at a webinar organized by Ovana E-learning in collaboration with Robo Garden, said: “With the new economy, the big gap that we found globally is that there is a big gap between the education learning outcomes and the economy. There is a need to start transforming the groups of people in different levels of education to improve their lives.
“The most important thing in an economy is skills; so today, technology is a new skill that everyone has to learn because it is not an option anymore. Today, with the right keywords in any social engine you can get information anywhere in a few minutes.”
He said with the help of coding, technology has been transcribed in different languages to help youths and adults to learn the new language of coding in a bid to be competitive across the globe.
He said going forward that the skills needed in 2030 are all about training and technology, which include digital literacy; innovation and creativity; decision making and cognitive flexibility.
“The future is here for Africa, and I love the commitment by the giant companies to bid the way for connectivity and some of the infrastructure. We see a bright future going forward working in Africa,” he said.
The Special Assistant, Technical Planning, Research & Development to the Minister of State for Education, Ministry of Education, Muna Onuzo-Iyamu, promised that the ministry would ensure that all hands are on deck to support digital education.
The Past National President, Association of Private School Proprietors of Nigeria, Sally Bolujoko, said Nigeria’s situation is a lot different from all other nations Robo Gardens has been to, noting that many children do not have access to electricity and technology.
“Coming to Nigeria is going to be tough and you just have to be patient as you deal with us. I want to assure you that Nigeria is ripe for digital learning. We want people to come in and adapt to the local content. We are hoping that partnering with Robo Gardens will bring about moral values in our school system, preparing our children for the future, as we are not yet ready for the future in Nigeria.”
“We have neglected digital education for too long and I am going to promise you that I will fight for our public schools because I weep for what happens to our rural children,” she added.
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