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Google partners Abia on ICT, skills development


[FILE PHOTO] Abia State Governor, Dr Okezie Ikpeazu

Google has established presence in Abia State to support Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) in Aba, the state’s business hub.The State Governor, Okezie Ikpeazu said that his government’s policy has been favorably disposed to supporting genuine investors, business operators and development partners whose activities would help develop the state.

This came to light when a Google Team paid him a visit in Umuahia on the establishment of Google SME Community Platform that will provide ICT backbone. This is to support small businesses and avail them global visibility through free Internet support facilities.

Leader of the Google Team and its (Google) Africa Lead – Public Policy and Government Affairs, Seember Nyager, said that the choice of Aba was sequel to the governor’s strategic positioning of Aba on the global map of entrepreneurship and development of SMEs.

Google had trained 150 youths in the state, who became Google Certified Internet Programmers to be deployed to different business clusters in Aba. They will train small business owners on the use of digital platforms to expand the scope of their businesses.

It was gathered that Google may also soon set up 20 Google based internet platforms at strategic locations at Aba to provide free internet services to business clusters.

This is part of the global commitment of Google to the growth and development of SMEs across the world for which Google selected two countries in Africa – Nigeria and Kenya for the pilot project. In Nigeria, three cities Aba, Lagos and Kaduna were selected for the program.

While declaring the training open, governor Ikpeazu represented by the Secretary to the State Government, Chris Ezem, urged the team to ensure that the people of the state get due benefits from establishing the Digital Base in strategic areas in Aba in particular and twenty other areas in the state in order to catalyze the expansion of the technological horizon of the Aba commercial city.

Ezem also made a case for the development of ICT policy of Abia state, establishment of internet services for the Government House and all the tertiary institutions in the state to enable the students take advantage of the innovation.He noted that with the gradual digital switch of business activities globally, entrepreneurs in Aba will after the digital training skills, be able to showcase their products internationally and thus expand their markets and customers.


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