ITU alliance to roll out 200 DX centres in Ghana
The International Telecommunications Union (ITU), the Norwegian and Ghanaian governments in partnership with multinational technology company Cisco has launched the ITU-Norway partnership on the Digital Transformation Centres (DTC) Initiative in Ghana.
The ITU in partnership with Cisco and its Country Digital Acceleration Program and Cisco Networking Academy intends to create a global network of centres to develop digital skills.
“It is an honour and inspiration for us at Cisco to work with you all. Norway’s government presented a whitepaper recently; highlighting just how important digital technology is for the ability to achieve Sustainable Development Goals by 2030. We truly believe, at Cisco, just how incredibly important the skills are as part of this journey overall. I also would really like to commend the government of Ghana for leaning in to help equip its citizens with getting these digital skills and capabilities on board,” said Wendy Mars, President of Cisco's EMEAR region.
Two-hundred centres in Ghana are expected to empower approximately 14,000 citizens with job-ready digital skills, in particular women entrepreneurs, pupils, teachers and marginalised groups.
Raphel Success, a graduate of the Get Connected programme, stated: “When I joined, I used the Get Connected programme to revise myself on what I actually know. This helped me get a deeper knowledge of programming and learn even more things about how to program. My advice to first time programmers, it’s good to introduce them to also have a little bit of knowledge to increase their confidence levels.”
At the beginning of 2020 South African black female-owned digital technology firm SmartDigital Solution partnered with the African Management Institute and Black Management Forum Sandton to launch the African Women in Digital Leadership Series, a platform designed to empower women to lead in the digital and data economy.
Organisers say the platform will cover leading women in the DRC, Ghana, Kenya, Mozambique, Nigeria, Rwanda and South Africa and will be rotated in different African countries.
Veronica Motloutsi, chief executive officer of SmartDigital Solution said that digital acumen is the main driver for women to access new markets and become game changers in the workplace.
"We believe that digital technologies offer women the potential to bypass some of the traditional cultural mobility barriers, particularly in emerging and developing countries such as the ones in Africa. Digital technologies can assist women access new markets, work flexibly, acquire and interact with customers and access finance for their ventures."
Digital gender gap
Almost as many women as men use the internet in Ghana, according to a survey from the World Wide Web Foundation, which finds men are just 6% more likely to be online than women.
This is in sharp contrast to the large gender gap found globally where men are 21% more likely to be online than women, rising to 52% in the world's least developed countries. In Uganda, which also featured in the study, men were 43% more likely to be online than women.
The survey shows that Ghana has made significant progress towards closing the gender gap in internet access, with 29% of women now online, up from fewer than 20% in 2016, according to a previous report from the Web Foundation and the Media Foundation for West Africa.