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NIPR, Microsoft to organise ICT training for university undergraduates

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NIPR, Microsoft to organise ICT training for university undergraduates


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Mr Franklyn Ginger-Eke, Chairman, NIPR 2019 Annual General Meeting/Conference[/caption]

NIPR, Microsoft to organise ICT training for university undergraduates

NIPR

By Emmanuel Afonne

Abuja, Oct. 3, 2016 The Nigerian Institute of Public Relations (NIPR) has concluded plans to partner with Microsoft, to develop the capacity of communication arts undergraduates in the area of ICT.

Mr Franklyn Ginger-Eke, Chairman, NIPR’s 2019 Annual General Meeting and Conference planning committee made this known on Thursday in Abuja while making a presentation on the Committee’s plans to the leadership of the NIPR , FCT Chapter.

Ginger-Eke , said the partnership was one of the FCT Chapter’s initiatives to expose the university students to practical digital experience in partnership with the multinational organisation.

He said that the ibjectuve was to widen their knowledge base for global competitiveness, saying that the initiative was also part of strategies to encourage sound education in Nigeria and bring the nation’s undergraduates up to speed with their counterparts across the globe.

“In this digital era where education is changing the way we live and study, Nigeria must make conscious effort towards empowering her youths with modern day skills and functional knowledge capable of putting them at par with their colleagues anywhere in the world.

“That is what we intend to achieve through this partnership with Microsoft,” he said.

According to him, capacity building is a collective responsibility of all stakeholders ss the idea of leaving education for government alone cannot work.

Speaking on the institute’s forthcoming AGM and Conference, Ginger-Eke hinted that the FCT Chapter of the NIPR was equally looking at the leadership question in Nigeria.

The Committee Chairman, noted that the NIPR intends to utilise the conference as a platform to address the leadership challenge confronting the country.

In his remarks, the Chapter Chairman, Dr Tayo Haastrup, said the choice of this year’s theme “The Leadership Question: Search for 21st Century Leaders” was apt, noting that the FCT chapter under his watch had always set agenda for national discourse.

“I am confident that this year’s conference like previous ones will address the critical issue of leadership and awaken our consciousness on the need for us as a nation to begin to set plans to raise visionary leaders who will lead our country to prosperity,” he said.

Haastrup ,emphasised that the Flagship Chapter’s conference has become a veritable platform for reputable Nigerians to proffer practical solutions to national issues.

He stated that credible personalities, who had honoured the Chapter’s invitation in the last three years as keynote speakers included: Amb. Maitama Sule (late), Bishop Hassan Kukah, Prof Pat Utomi, Mr Frank Nweke Jr., Femi Falana,SAN, Dr Walter Ofonagoro and Basorun Seinde Aregbofa, among others. (NAN)

EMAF/KKA/SH

(NAN)
Edited by Kola Adeyemi/Sadiya Hamza

Emmanuel Afonne: is a graduate and a professionally trained journalist, with experience in national news reporting/editing and verification at the News Agency of Nigeria. NNN is a Nigerian online news portal that publishes breaking news in Nigeria, and across the world. Our journalists are honest, fair, accurate, thorough and courageous in gathering, reporting and interpreting news in the best interest of the public, because truth is the cornerstone of journalism and they strive diligently to ascertain the truth in every news report. Contact: editor[at]nnn.com.ng

Science & Technology

ICT contributes 14% to GDP in Q1 of 2020 — NITDA boss

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Mr Kashifu Inuwa, Director-General, National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), on Friday said Information and Technology (ICT) contribution to Gross Domestic Product (GDP), was 14 per cent in first quarter of 2020.


Inuwa, represented by Dr Vincent Olatunji, the Director, E-Government Development and Regulations, said this in a webinar organised by Abuja and Kano Chapters of  Information Technology Association of Nigeria (ITAN).

He said the growth of 14 per cent represented an increase of almost one per cent when compared to the contribution of 13.12 per cent in the last quarter of 2019.

He noted that the increase happened because people relied more on digital platforms during the lockdown.

“In spite of the ravages of the COVID-19 pandemic on all economies of the world, ICT  grew by 14 per cent compared to the initial growth of 13.12 per cent in the last quarter.

”The agency’s mandate of regulating the IT sector  ensured that it created initiatives and schemes to mitigate the effect of COVID-19 pandemic on the ICT sector.

”We are ensuring the growth of the sector by promoting the startups ecosystem.

NITDA, with its  two special purpose vehicles, Office for ICT Innovation and Entrepreneurship (OIIE), and the Office for Nigerian Content in ICT (ONC), are working hard at achieving the mandate of fostering the growth of technology Startup ecosystem.

“The focus also meant ensuring patronage of local content in ICT.

“Some of these initiatives, include Work Permit for Technology Startups during lockdown, the Nigeria COVID-19 Innovation Challenge where three startups with innovative solutions emerged winners,” he said.

Inuwa said that the innovations were locally made ventilator, decontamination chamber and e-Health monitor Technology Innovation and Entrepreneurship Support Scheme (TIESS).

He said that the TIESS had Incubation Programme, Technical Capacity Building, Internship Programme and Hub Upscaling.

The director-general said the schemes were designed to target various aspects for them to achieve maximum positive effect on the ICT ecosystem.

“Another programme being developed is Startup Workspace Voucher programme aimed at supporting young  startup to overcome  their financial challenges.

”With strategic partnership and collaborations with stakeholders, a new Nigeria with robust digital economy can be developed,” he said.

Participants at the event included Gov. Abdullahi Ganduje of Kano state and the Minister of FCT, Malam Musa Bello, among others.

Edited By: Chidinma Agu/Donald Ugwu (NAN)

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Education

Poor ICT compliance level among teachers worry Anambra Commissioner

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Prof. Kate Omenugha, Anambra Commissioner for Basic Education,  on Friday said the government was worried by the poor Information and Communication Technology (ICT) compliance level of teachers in the state.


Omenugha said this while addressing the media on the E-Conference on Education being organised to prepare stakeholders for the emerging challenges in postCOVID-19 education.

She said about 4,000 participants were expected at the conference with the theme: ”Facing the New Normal: Post-COVID-19 Education in Anambra state.”

Omenugha regretted that most teachers in Anambra did not have internet enabled gadgets like computer, tablet or Android phones needed for ICT.

According to her, the state is working hard to upgrade  Information and Communication Technology knowledge of teachers to position them for post-COVID-19 teaching and learning era.

”The online meeting is the first in the series of activities geared towards preparing education stakeholders for the emerging challenges in post COVID-19 education.

”I understand that majority of the teachers in the state do not have android phone and lack ICT knowledge, I wonder how they can effectively cope in the present education delivery.

“They do not have the android phone not because they don’t have the money to buy but because they do not see it as a priority.

“The conference would be used to create the consciousness and understanding among teachers as well as make them to appreciate the importance of android phone and ICT knowledge.

“Any teacher who is not ICT compliant today will not be able to fit into the present education,” she said.

Omenugha said the conference was designed to equip students and teachers ahead of the schools resumption.

She said that it was also designed to stimulate innovative skills among teachers and boost the education sector.

Omenugha said every teacher needed self-development to move forward in the profession and ICT, which was the only way for them to develop, especially during  post COVID-19 era.

Mrs Chinwe Nweke, Managing Director, Integral Development Konsult (IDK), an ICT company and partner to Anambra government, said the conference would be streamed live on social media, Facebook, Twitter, Zoom and YouTube among others.

Nweke urged teachers, parents and students to hook-up to the conference.

She said it was time for teachers to start thinking globally and acting locally, adding that government was being proactive by coming up with innovations to upgrade education system to ICT based.

Mrs Sally Mbanefo, Commissioner for Tertiary Education and Science Education, was also present at the event.

Edited By: Chidinma Agu/Oluwole Sogunle (NAN)

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Economy

2020: Cowry Asset disagrees with IMF on 5.4% economy contraction

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Cowry Asset Management Ltd on Wednesday projected three per cent contraction for the Nigerian economy in 2020, contrary to the International Monetary Fund’s (IMF) -5.4 per cent projection.


Mr Johnson Chukwu, its Group Managing Director, gave the projection at the company’s webinar themed: “H1 2020 Review: Expectations and Investment Strategies in H2 2020″.

Chukwu projected that the country’s economy, with the robust growth in agriculture and ICT, would contract only between two and three per cent.

“While we agree that the Nigerian economy will contract in 2020, we, however, believe that the contraction will not be as steep as the 5.4 per cent projected by the IMF.

“We expect the agriculture sector, which accounts for about 22 per cent of the GDP, to remain resilient due principally to favourable weather conditions this year.

“In summary, robust growth in agriculture and ICT, which combined accounts for 36 per cent of the GDP, will have the effect of cushioning the rate of economic contraction in 2020.

“We, therefore, project an economic contraction of -2 per cent to -3 per cent,” Chukwu stated.

He noted that the ICT sector, which accounts for 14 per cent, was expected to maintain its growth momentum in the remaining quarters of the year.

According to him, the oil & gas and manufacturing sectors are expected to contract in H2 2020.

On general guidance for investing through the pandemic, he urged investors to incorporate a long-term view into their portfolio decisions.

Chukwu stated that diversification was key, noting that crypto-currencies, agricultural funds and foreign exchange trading should be seen as high-risk investments.

“Anyway you slice it, the Nigerian economy may only recover slowly in the aftermath of the pandemic.

“We expect weak Q2 and Q3 results will drive equities prices lower.

“Investors with long-term horizon may be facing the best time to take position.

“We advise focus on fundamentally strong companies with low price earnings, high-dividend yield and historically high-return on equity.

“Sectors less impacted by the pandemic — ICT, health care, financial services and agriculture — may offer additional value,” Chukwu said.

On fixed income, he favoured investment in the short-term bonds and in fixed deposits, to retain the ability to benefit from the expected upward shift in the yield curve.

Chukwu noted that more corporates would access the market with corporate bonds, to raise funds for their businesses.

“We may see new corporate bond issues, as firms look to take advantage of the low-yield environment,” Chukwu said.

He noted that consumer demand would remain weak in H2 2020, due to increased level of unemployment, reduced salaries and limited fiscal capacity of the Federal, States and Local Governments.

Chukwu stated that inflation rate would trend further north, driven by deprecating local currency, increasing cost-reflective fuel prices, electricity tariff and food costs.

Edited By: Folorunso Poroye/Oluwole Sogunle (NAN)

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Economy

AGF restates commitment to enhance national cyber security

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The Office of the Accountant General of the Federation (AGF), has restated its commitment to partner with relevant agencies to enhance national cyber security.


Mr Ahmed Idris, Accountant General of the Federation (AGF), said this during the oversight visit by members of the Senate Committee on Information and Communication Technology (ICT) and Cybercrime in Abuja.

Idris disclosed that the office had engaged in an immense effort at protecting public fund using designated infrastructures.

Such infrastructures, he said, include: Government Integrated Financial Management Information System (GIFMIS) and Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System (IPPIS) among others.

According to the AGF, in order to mitigate risk, 99 per cent of its personnel are ICT compliance, and the office had partners relevant agencies to train and retrain the staff so as to be updated on Cyber security.

Idris also added that security and integrity background checks were always carried out by the agencies saddled with such tasks.

OAGF also liaises with National Information Technology Department Agency for infrastructure and equipment specification approval,” he said.

Idris further said that the salary account on IPPIS platform was 793, 580 while Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) on the platform was 602 among others.

In his response, the Chairman of the Committee, Sen. Yakubu Oseni, commended the management of OAGF for the measures put in place to mitigate risk and enhance cyber security.

Oseni noted that the oversight visit was inline with its statutory responsibility as enshrined in section 88 and 89 of the Constitution of Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 as amended.

He said that the committee was created for the need to mobilise the Nigerian system to meet up with the World of Information and Communication Technology and the promotion of cyber security.

“So, we are here on fact finding visit to ascertain the level of ICT compliance of Ministries, Departments and Agencies, and we feel that we should start from all important Treasury House of the nation.

“And we have seen their ICT facilities and their level of preparedness in terms of cyber security, and we are satisfied with what is on ground.

“It shows that the management is up and doing, so we encourage him not to relent in his efforts to ensure cyber security, because hackers are always working 24 hours to make sure that they achieve their aim,” Oseni said.

Edited By: Modupe Adeloye/Felix Ajide (NAN)

 

 

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