Kwara Community Unveils Solar Powered Digital Literacy Centre

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Emma Okonji

In an effort to become a digital smart community, Imode Community in Oke-Ero Local Government Area of Kwara State has launched a solar powered digital literacy centre, destined towards making its youths to become digitally savvy.

The Community Development Association, borrowing a leaf from the National Information Technology (NIT) Policy, seeks to make the community dwellers, especially the youths, become IT complaint.

Speaking at the public presentation of the solar-powered Digital Literacy Center, equipped with modern ICT infrastructure, the President, Imode Development Association (IDA), Pastor Joseph Babatunde, said the projects, which comprises a modern IT centre and a school bus, were designed to assist the students imbibe the IT culture as the world has gone digital.

According to Babatunde, “The idea of the provision of a modern IT Centre for our school, came to me a couple of years ago when one of my children did the post-JAMB exam in University of Ilorin (Unilorin). The students were all given computers to do the exams. While she breezed through the exams, most of the other children were just starring at the device until the time was over. I felt challenged there and then, to give every child that needed opportunity”.

Explaining the Imode ICT Vision, IDA’s Vice President, Reverend Sunday Folayan, said they were closer to achieving a digitally Smart Community. “This will be achieved by reliance on technology, carefully backed up with traditional methods that are functional. A significant number of indigenes will continue to live outside the community or the country, and their needs and requirements to stay connected to their roots will continue to inform the community’s development policies.

“ICT will be used to solve practical problems, such as educational deficiency as well as the security of lives and properties,” Folayan said.

He added that members of the community would come to accept a high standard of up-to-date facilities, ease-of-use and reliability, richness of information, integrated services and excellent support.
Executive Director of Paradigm Initiative (PI) and content partners on the project, Mr. Gbenga Sesan, said the initiative would birth huge impact if well utilised.

Sesan, who was represented by the Programme Manager Paradigm Initiative, Mr. Tosin Abolaji, said: “The facility is primarily setup for the youth in the community and we believe they won’t be denied the use of it. We will encourage the Association to have a committee that will look into the management of the facility, design a program that will ensure that the youth are regularly trained.”

Chairman, IDA’s Education Committee, Professor Mike Abiodun, said: “The government cannot do it alone; the same thing applies to the schools and parents. It has to be a collaboration between the government, the community and parents. We are in the ICT age; if you are not computer literate it will be difficult to contribute effectively.”
The solar-powered Digital Centre is equipped with 40 laptops, printer, internet connectivity, and other facilities.