The pandemic has magnified inequities, including the digital access divide and a lack of digital literacy and access are leaving many in Africa out of the digital landscape altogether.
Amujae Leader and CEO and Executive Secretary of Lagos State Employment Trust Fund (LSETF), Tejumola Abisoye, joined a panel of women leaders at this year’s Africa Tech Festival to discuss how leaders should be addressing the digital access gap. Ms. Abisoye acknowledged that part of the problem was a lack of opportunities to learn and develop digital skills, saying:
“Sometimes it’s not about no jobs being available, it’s about people having the right skills to take up the jobs in the market.”
Solving the digital skills gap requires partnerships between governments and the private sector to ensure access to skills training is available to those who need it most. LSETF has been at the forefront of these programs and is currently providing online training modules for 18-30 year olds, building an in demand, digitally-literate workforce which in turn helps to address youth unemployment in Nigeria. Ms. Abisoye noted that it was critical to include women in Africa’s digital transformation, and challenged the audience to think about how existing tools and technologies could be optimized for women.
To date, LSETF has supported over 5,000 youths through training including by providing grants and vouchers through student loan programs. Ms Abisoye also discussed the importance of supporting local businesses and creating “resilient business structures that are tied to the digital economy.”
The fireside discussion was hosted by accelerateHER. Ms. Abisoye was joined by Imelda Ngunzu, Manager, Markets Development for Strategic Growth at Mastercard; Rene Parker, CEO, Director, and Co-Founder of RLabs; and Sizah Busane, CEO of Glips Tech.
Watch the full panel session here (Note: registration required)