By Lukman Olabiyi
Lagos State Government has begun the empowerment of one million youths in the state with necessary digital skills to prevent cyber crime and enhance the knowledge of youths in online security.
Special Adviser to Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu on Education, Mr. Tokunbo Wahab, disclosed this while speaking to journalists on the commencement of the Second Phase of the Eko Digital programme.
He stated that aside from cybersecurity, the state government is equally equipping youths with skills in digital marketing, entrepreneurship, python and other programming languages that are relevant in the 21st-Century digital age.
Wahab explained that the initiative is aimed at producing more tech-savvy Lagosians, stressing that an ongoing training of over 5,000 youths at 11 centres is also part of Governor Sanwo-Olu’s development agenda aimed at empowering youths and students across primary and secondary schools within the State.
Wahab noted that the ongoing training was the second phase of the three-phase programme designed to build a system that ensures that youths do not need to wait for employment after their education, rather they can become employers of labour as well as solution providers for Nigeria, especially Lagos State.
The governor’s aide explained that the inclusion of cybersecurity in the curriculum would make youths relevant in the global digital market, just as they become solution providers for 21st century Lagos.
He pointed out that the government designed the training in compliance with the National Cybersecurity Policy and Strategy (NCPS) to provide human capacity for the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and Independent Corrupt Practices Commission (ICPC) in their anti-graft war.
Earlier, Assistant Project Coordinator, LoftInc Allied Partners Limited, the organisation collaborating with the state government on the programme, Ms. Olatokunbo Aiyenimelo, stated that the training expenses was fully borne by the government in order to attract more youths and remove the financial burden on the trainees.
Aiyenimelo said that aside from providing an online skill acquisition programme, the government also created an avenue for the trainees to get computers, internet connectivity and other materials that would aid learning.
Disclosing that the trainees only need to visit any of the digital training centres of their choice, Ms. Aiyenimelo disclosed that Laptops, Internet Connection and an Android Phone for effective learning have been provided at the accredited libraries to aid learning.
She said: “It is a self-paced programme, meaning that the ability to assimilate will determine the students’ duration to learn the programme. This is the second phase of the programme and so far, we have over 5,000 people registered for this phase two of the programme in the State. We have two sessions for them daily, the first session starts at 9:30 am and ends at 11am while the second session kick-off at noon.