Team Nigeria, comprising of some Nigerian students from the University of Ibadan, Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, and University of Port Harcourt, have won the grand first place position out of over 150,000 other students who participated in the Cloud and Network examination at the 2020 Huawei ICT Competition. The students were honored for their achievement at an online awards ceremony hosted from the Huawei Headquarters in China.
The closing award ceremony event which held on the 14th of November, 2020 at the Huawei Nigeria (Abuja) office was attended by the representative of the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Muhammadu Buhari (GCFR), Mr. Nasir Sa’idu Adhama, Special Assistant on Youth & Students Affairs, the representative of the Honourable Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr. Isa Ali Pantami, Dr. Abimbola Alale, the Managing Director/CEO, NIGCOMSAT, the representative of the Executive Secretary of the National University Commission (NUC), Prof. Abubakar Rasheed, Mr. Chris Maiyaki, Deputy Executive Secretary of the NUC, some university Vice Chancellors and representatives, Huawei management staff, the award-winning students, instructors, parents and the media.
This excellent performance is an outstanding improvement from last year in which Team Nigeria had emerged third position in the same global competition. This shows the level of improvement Nigeria has made in its knowledge of ICT in just one year.
Speaking on behalf the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Muhammadu Buhari (GCFR), the Special Assistant on Youth & Students Affairs, Mr. Nasir Sa’idu Adhama, said “I congratulate the Nigerian students for coming this far in this Global ICT Competition. I also thank Huawei for supporting our Nigerian students and hope Huawei will continue to partner with the country in developing our ICT capabilities.”
Representing the Honourable Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, the Managing Director/CEO, NIGCOMSAT, Dr. Abimbola Alale expressed gratitude to Huawei for the opportunity given to the Nigerian students to showcase their expertise at the global level and congratulated the students for making Nigeria proud.
“I commend Huawei for organizing this ICT competition as part of your Corporate Social Responsibility efforts. We look forward to more collaboration between Huawei and the Federal Ministry of Communication and Digital Economy” She said on behalf of the Honourable Minister.
Mr. Chris Maiyaki, Deputy Executive Secretary of the NUC, speaking on behalf of the Executive Secretary, Prof. Abubakar Rasheed said “the National University Commission will like to rejoice with Huawei and the triumphant Nigerian students on this occasion – the Huawei Global ICT competition – which is now highly regarded as the annual knowledge festival. The NUC is honoured to be associated to this success story. This proves that with the right environment and ecosystem, Nigeria can take on global counterparts on any intellectual platform.”
The Huawei ICT competition which was established to foster ICT learning in Africa and bridge the gap between theoretical study and practical industry experience typically comprises of a national preliminary contest, regional semi-final and a Global final. This global victory by these Nigerian students was therefore preceded by a successful campaign at both the national finals which held on December 10th 2019 and had over 23,000 Nigerian students in the contest and the Sub-Saharan Africa Region ICT Competition finals which held on September 10th and 11th, 2020, featuring 123 student-talents from 13 countries in Sub-Saharan Africa, divided into 41 teams (28 network track and 13 cloud track teams), to determine those who will be selected to participate the Huawei Global ICT Competition finals.
The students who were excited to emerge first place after over 10 months of consistent hard work felt proud of their achievement for themselves, for their families and for the nation. Speaking at the ceremony, the students’ representative, Hamza Atabor said “I will like to show my gratitude to Huawei, my Vice Chancellor, my instructors, team mates and my family for this great opportunity. This journey with Huawei came with benefits such as professional certification in the field of interest. I am now HCIP certified in the field of Routing and Switching and in a few months I will attain an extra level certification.”
“Huawei gives students the opportunity to learn skills with are recognized in the world of ICT. Huawei provides a platform where students can see and practice new innovative and cutting-edge technology to grow and develop themselves. To me, Huawei stands for H – hope for development, U – unique, A – available to everyone, W – worldwide scope, E – Excellent in operations and I – intelligent in technology” He added.
Mr. Kelvin Yang, Deputy Managing Director/CEO of Huawei Technologies Company Nigeria Limited in his goodwill remark stated that “In over two decades of operating in Nigeria, Huawei has remained committed to training Nigerians in digital skills and cultivating ICT talents to build a fully digital economy. We launched the ICT Talents Eco-system development program so that local ICT talents can be nurtured and developed to the point of global recognition. We are so glad that this is beginning to become a reality as we have gathered here today to celebrate and witness the excellent performance of our Nigerian students.”
“I want to use this opportunity to congratulate all the students who took part in this year’s competition…The knowledge and skills you have acquired from this competition will stay with you forever. You connected for the Glory and now the future is yours for the taking… [You] are the future of this great country Nigeria and they have already started to make us proud of what the future holds for Nigeria as a nation. As a company, we look forward to Nigeria’s digital youth becoming the world pillar of the future” the Deputy MD added.
Huawei has continued to encourage Nigerian youths to embrace ICT learning by establishing ICT Academies in about 79 universities and tertiary institutions across Nigeria which has offered free digital trainings to over 40,000 Nigerians, with many of those trained students going on to take and pass various Huawei professional certification exams. As at today, there are over 180 Huawei Certified Academy instructors. Through the flagship Huawei program called Seeds for the Future, every year, Nigerian university students are sponsored by Huawei to China for a 2-weeks digital training along with other students across the globe. Huawei has also gone ahead to continuously provide jobs and internship opportunities to many students who have now become pace setters across the country in technological advancement. Through the global ICT competition, Nigerian students are given the opportunity to showcase their gained knowledge and cultivated talents. The company has also helped raise digital literacy among ordinary citizens through other Corporate Social Responsibility activities.