Call to equip learners with ICT skills

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Bulawayo (New Ziana)-THERE is need to equip learners with information communication technology (ICT) skills at an early age as the world is progressively becoming digital, a cabinet minister has said.

ICT and Courier Services Minister Jenfan Muswere said this during the official launch of computer labs established at 21 primary schools in Bulawayo through the Universal Services Fund (USF).

The Postal Telecommunications Regulatory Authority of Zimbabwe (Potraz) collects levies mobile and telephone providers under the USF.

An adult library computer lab was also established in Nketa.

“This equipment is to make sure we will be able an ICT astute society that is expected to transform the macroeconomics landscape of Zimbabwe, “said Muswere.

He said his Ministry would continue to play a critical role in transformation agenda by ensuring the deployment of ICT infrastructure for all citizens.

Muswere said digital technology was important in attaining the National Development Strategy 1 (NDS1).

“Digital economy was stated as one of the 14 priorities underpinning the NDS1 strategy as the country thrives to become an upper middle-income society by 2030,”he said.

Speaking at the same occasion, Ministry permanent secretary Beaular Chirume said they were working with various stakeholders including the Ministries of Primary and Secondary Education and that Energy and Power Development to ensure all schools were electrified so that they could establish computer labs to make learning and research by students easy.

“The student can now use computers to do their research during their spare times. This will help them to gain more knowledge. They can have time to google and surf the internet and gain more knowledge, “she said.

Potraz director general Gift Machengete said they had embarked on a programme to establish computer labs in schools across the country, particularly those in rural areas.

“We first enquired whether the schools have electricity before we hand over computers. We don’t want them to gather dust or for us to wait until electricity is installed.

“We are concentrating on schools with electricity, but we are also considering installation of solar in rural schools that do not access to the grid,” he said.

Machengete said last year, Potraz installed computer labs at 1 100 schools, most of which were in rural areas.

Some of the schools where the computer labs were established in Bulawayo include Emganwini High, Hamilton High, Baines Junior, Garrison Primary, Induna High and Ngwenyama Primary.

New Ziana

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