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IOM, Cisco to equip IDPs in North East with digital skills

The International Organization for Migration (IOM) Nigeria and Cisco have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to equip the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in the…

The International Organization for Migration (IOM) Nigeria and Cisco have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to equip the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in the North East with digital skills.

The MoU signed at the IOM office in Abuja on Monday will facilitate the implementation of the Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) project.

This partnership will see to the implementation of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of eradicating poverty, providing quality education, and building sustainable cities and communities which was adopted by all United Nations member states in 2015.

The TVET project will see to the provision of vocational and digital skills among other trainings and offer alternate livelihood opportunities to IDPs in Northeast Nigeria.

IOM Nigeria Chief of Mission, Laurent de Boeck, said during the signing ceremony that: “The signing represents the common vision between IOM and the private sector.”

“Our objective is to provide durable solutions to our displaced population. We have selected particularly the North East which has been under attack for over a decade. We have displacement all over the North East region,” he said.

He said the plan was to give the youths who have not been able to gain skills over the years because of the insurgency in the area an avenue to get certified.

“It is to respond to that that we welcome this partnership with Cisco providing the possibilities for those youths to gain skills which will allow them to be active actors of development and the peace process in the Nigerian society,” the IOM chief added.

Paola Pace, IOM Nigeria’s Deputy Chief of Mission, said the project targets the vulnerable populations between the 18-25 age bracket.

“We will give priority to the people with disabilities,” she added.

On his part, the representative of Cisco, Mr Clayton Naidoo, said the partnership would be a great start in laying the foundation for solving some of the critical problems in the Northeast.

“At Cisco, we are particularly passionate about providing the right level of digital skills so every single individual irrespective of the circumstance has the opportunity to get a decent job and earn a living.

“We sincerely believe at Cisco that technology is an equalizer. We have seen across all the work that we have done in Africa that technology is an equalizer. What we want to do is to bring technology to the doorstep of these individuals in Borno State and ensure that they get access to the same content, exactly the same format that any other child in the developed world would get,” he said.

He said the pilot project would start with three schools with the hope to upscale it subsequently, adding that: “This will give us enough data to adapt the programme and upscale it.”

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