Parliamentarians benefit on ICT Training
In order to enhance the effective development of Information and Communications Technology (ICT) in the country, Parliament through a Parliamentary joint Committee has benefited on a one day capacity training engagement from Center for Excellence International (CEI).
The committees that benefited from this training were Committee on Information and Communications, Committee on Education Science and Technology and Committee on Finance and Economic Development which was organized to capacitate Members of Parliament (MP’s) on the significance approach to transformation of the former Freetown Telecommunications Institute into an (ICT) Center of Excellence for the Mano River Union at the New Administrative Building at OAU Drive Tower Hill, Freetown on Wednesday 26th July 2017.
In his opening statement, Chairman of the training workshop Hon. Ibrahim Been Kargbo representing Constituency 030 Bombali district described the training session as a step in the right direction.
Hon. I B Kargbo noted that the purpose of ICT through the use of information and technology as part of government agenda for prosperity adding that the development of ICT all over the world is critical particularly the social media amongst others.
He expressed his thanks to the private sector especially Africell and Airtel for their active participation in terms of training and assures continual commitments to ensure further engagement and collaboration with partnership with questions and answers for the development of ICT in the country and the world in general.
In his paper presentation, Dr. Daniel Stevens from Centre of Excellence for the Manor River Union informed Members of Parliament (MP’s) that the (MRU) was established through the visionary leadership of His Excellency Siaka P. Stevens, President of the Republic of Sierra Leone and His Excellency William R. Tolbert Jr., President of the Republic of Liberia on October 3rd 1973 through a declaration signed by the two Presidents in Malema Town, Pujejun district, Republic of Sierra Leone.
He said the then People’s Revolutionary Republic of Guinea joined the Union and had been attending Union meetings as an observer since 2004, formally acceded to the Union on 15th May 2008 in Monrovia, Republic of Liberia.
Dr. Daniel Stevens further maintained that the establishment of the Union Institutions is to train nationals in technical and professional disciplines to enhance performance in the public sector.
He added that the civil conflict which engulfed the sub-region shattered almost all those institutions and investments, broke down government structures and systems including the rule of Law, stifled overall development and eroded the general wellbeing of citizenry.
Taking into consideration on the establishment and operations of the MRU secretariat, Dr. Stevens also said that the MRU has decided to revive those institutions by looking at the prevailing and emerging capacity building needs in order to forester meaningful contributions to the socio-economic development of the country with full integration of the sub-region.
He said that through transparency and accountability, MRU secretariat has been identified areas of centers of excellence to be promoted and support utilization with existing facilities adding that MRU also supported the establishment of the Freetown Telecommunication Institute which has been providing professional and technical training for the sub-region.
He reiterated that the Manor River Union states are endowed with vast natural resources including forests, mineral resources, gold, bauxite, diamonds, Iron ore, rutile and platinum among several others.
He went on to say that the limited infrastructural development include roads, railways, ports, energy, water and sanitation and information and communication technology among others as according to him have negative impacts on the socio-economic development and the overall wellbeing of the country’s population.
He said, the MRU has been prompted to promote the establishment of an ICT Centre of Excellence to increase demand for ICT skills in the sub-region which the government of Sierra Leone is equally enthusiastic about in order to work in partnership with the sub-regional governments to develop, create and support the nation’s new ICT Centre of Excellence to enhance sustainable development in the country.
By: Mohamed Y. Turay
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