UK Set To Empower Over One Million Nigerians With Digital Skills


May 9, 2024

The United Kingdom (UK) has announced its Digital Development Strategy, titled “Digital Development Strategy” White Paper on International Development, which aims to provide digital skills training to over one million Nigerians within the next two to three years.

ADULAWO NEWS reports that UK government has also pledged to play a significant role in supporting the Nigerian digital transformation agenda.

The UK High Commission, speaking through its various Heads of departments at a workshop with technology journalists held at the residence of the Deputy High Commissioner in Lagos, unveiled its plan, highlighting Nigeria’s role as its primary market.
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With an 80-year history in Nigeria, the Commission emphasized the duty to transfer the technologies that contributed to its leadership in Europe and its ranking as the third most advanced globally in technology.

The High Commission revealed that Nigeria and UK had business transactions worth seven billion pounds last year alone, highlighting the country’s importance to its development agenda.
UK’s Digital Access Programme Adviser & Country Lead, Idongesit Udoh, stated that UK is planning to apply the principles of its DDS white paper to provide digital dividends in Nigeria within the next two to three years.
Udoh said: “The UK’s Digital Development Strategy is a deliverable of the UK’s White Paper on International Development, and the strategy is the UK’s overarching plan on digital development. However, the Digital Access Programme, DAP is the established programme that demonstrates UK’s integrated approach to digital development, now incapsulated in the new UK’s Digital Development Strategy.

“In Nigeria, the DAP will continue to deliver the interconnected objectives of the DDS and through its key priority areas, including four interconnected objectives : Digital Transformation which catalyses the economy, government, and society through digital technologies; Digital Inclusion which ensures that no-one is left behind in a digital world; Digital Responsibility which enables a safe, secure, and resilient digital environment and Digital Sustainability which harnesses digital technologies in support of our climate change and environmental aims.
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“The DDS will deliver on these four top priorities, through a combination of policy and programming work, including Last-mile Connectivity, dealing with basic connectivity in remote, low-income areas to ensure that the most marginalised can benefit from digital technologies.
“We will also dwell on Digital Public Infrastructure (DPI)for society-wide digital services, such as e-government and national payment systems, to enable digital transformation of both government and the private sector.

“Another area is the Artificial intelligence, which ensures rapid evolution of AI presents both opportunities and risks, eliminating the risks which can see some countries left behind due to their weaker digital foundations.
“We will also push to eliminate the gender digital divide which limits women and girls’ ability to benefit from digital development,” he added.
The UK Government launched the Digital Development Strategy (DDS) on March 18th, 2024.
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The DDS outlines the government’s plan to collaborate with partner countries, such as Nigeria, towards an inclusive, responsible, and sustainable digital future.
This will include supporting digital transformation and managing emerging risks for the next seven years..

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