The Lagos State Government has unveiled its Digital Library, aimed at providing unlimited access to educational and instructional materials for students, teachers, researchers and all seekers of knowledge as part of its efforts to becoming the model of excellence in the provision of education in Africa,
Speaking at the ceremony, the Lagos State Governor, Mr. Akinwumi Ambode who was represented by the Secretary to the State Government, Mr. Tunji Bello, said the digital library, tagged ‘Educate Lagos’, is one of the initiatives of the government geared towards achieving its goal of becoming the next financial and technology hub in Africa.
Describing the project as the first of its kind in the state and the largest learning platforms in Africa, Ambode said, “through this platform we are providing access to learning materials for everyone particularly for students and researchers. The digital library provides a repository of content including 2,000 study aids on core subjects from primary to secondary school curriculum, over 1,600 tutorials, instructional videos, selected e-books for primary to SS3 approved texts, brief history of Lagos State, online forum, podcasts, exam-mate, among others.
“It also include quality research papers from Lagos State tertiary institutions covering a wide variety of topics digitised for the platform: vocational training videos; entrepreneurship content; creatively presented history, lessons and online courses on coding. I therefore use this opportunity to encourage our students, teachers, researchers and everyone that is interested in knowledge acquisition to make use of this platform which can be accessed from any part of the world,” Ambode said.
Earlier in his remarks, the Special Adviser to the Governor on Education, Mr. Obafela Bank-Olemoh said the Lagos Digital Library is in tandem with the Governor’s vision to increase Lagosians access to knowledge, run an inclusive education system and Lagos that works for all.
According to him, the dream of a Lagos that works for all cannot be realised without education. “So what we are doing with Educate Lagos is a portal that allows everybody, regardless of whoever you are, you have no excuse to fail in Lagos. Like I said earlier, this is an extension of the free education policy that was done by late Chief Obafemi Awolowo in the 50s. So, what we tried to do is to democratise education and make it available to everybody.”
Emphasising on the state government’s effort to ensure sustainability of the project as well as free and seamless access to the portal, Bank-Olemoh disclosed that the state government is partnering with some private sectors to achieve to that.
“We are working on two major initiatives; we are partnering with some telecoms companies to ensure there is free access to this portal. So, even if you don’t have data on your device, you can still access this portal.”
He said the portal will be a very active and that content would be added on weekly basis, which would include some unique African contents that will teach users history of Lagos.
“We know that the future of Lagos is going to be technology-driven; we have a lot of young people in our population. What we are trying to do is to ensure that we give Lagosians no reason to fail. You have no reason to fail! If for example you go to your class and you feel you did not understand what was taught, all you need to do is to go to educatelagos.com. We have videos on different subjects. And if your teacher didn’t teach well, you can just watch the videos and you learn. And if you now want to practice you can now go to examine-mate. There are over 10,000 exam questions are there on different subjects, free of charge,” Bank-Olemoh said.