Nigeria’s Ministry of Communication has emphasised the need to partner with ICT giant Google to train and equip Internet and technology savvy youths across various levels of ICT capacity development
The position of the government was made known by Mr. Adebayo Shittu, the Minister of Communications in a statement signed by Mr. Victor Oluwadamilare, the Special Assistant on Media to the minister, at the closing of a Google event in Lagos on Thursday.
He said that Nigeria as a nation had so much more to learn and gain from the digital revolution being championed by Google and will leverage the tech giant’s offerings to change the poor narrative.
The minister commended the commitment of Google Nigeria to implement ambitious reforms and bring about macroeconomic stability in the context of the country’s ongoing Smart Digital Nigeria transition process.
Shittu stressed that the efforts were bearing tangible results and had laid the foundation for a credible path to fiscal sustainability and collaboration.
He said that Google, being one of the tech giants in computing and the web, had been at the centre of the digital penetration.
He said that with its popularity it had opened platforms that power lots of smartphones with android and other digital tools. “A lot has changed in Nigeria since the huge wave of Internet and mobile adoption globally. Today, access to smart phones and the web is growing.”
“Indeed, there are about 149 million mobile subscribers and 97 million internet users, 76 percent of them can access the internet on their phones.
“The growth in adoption of these trends amongst Nigerians presents huge opportunities for businesses which is important for government’s ambition on economic diversification.
“However, only a small number of individuals and enterprises are currently taking full advantage of new digital opportunities available.”
The communications minister said it was therefore worthy to note that through critical partnerships government was leveraging on Google’s strong community relationships to train one million people in Nigeria and Africa.
“It is also instructive to note that the web is a driver of economic growth, and is transforming society as a whole.
“People must be equipped through training and re-skilling to make use of the tools and take advantage of it for entrepreneurship, employment and e-inclusion.”