Microsoft and Sidmach Technologies have partnered to train 15 youths in software development and Information Technology.
Speaking at the ‘AppFactory Initiative’ graduation ceremony in Ikeja, Lagos State, Head Strategic Partnerships Microsoft Afrika, Soronfe Uzomah, said the training was to bridge the digital skills gap in the African continent.
According to him, if the gap is not addressed there would be problem in the future.
He emphasised the need for government to set policies and regulation and to create an environment that allows such initiative to thrive in terms of infrastructure.
He said the private sector needs to step in to provide programs to upscale the sector, adding that everybody needs to work together to provide solutions.
“At Microsoft we have lots of initiative to address the digital skills gap, of which AppFactory is one. If an African youth has the right digital skills, he can compete with anybody anywhere in the world for jobs. This is because digital skills are easily exported.
“The big picture of what we are trying to achieve in AppFactory is to create a continent of digitally skilled young people able to get jobs, retain the jobs, compete globally for those jobs and services and able to set up companies that provide world class service.”
He said Microsoft will continue to invest, noting that plans are ongoing to expand the programme, engage more people and drive the investment.
He said the graduation from AppFactory is barely the beginning, telling the graduates that what they do after the certification is what is important.
“Your journey starts when you are paid for an idea that you have created from your brain. I want you to go back and think that you have the capacity to come up with good solutions that are relevant to today’s market, because your customers want the solution that solves their problem. The skills you have learnt here are those in demand and if you take it upon yourself, you will take over the market and people will pay for your knowledge, insight and solution,” he said.
Managing Director, Sidmach Technologies Nigeria Limited, Mr Chijoke Eke, said AppFactory is one of many Microsoft programs geared towards equipping Africa and Africans with the right tools, knowledge and resources to foster solutions development through technology.
He explained that Sidmach and Microsoft jointly invested and enrolled some of the brightest graduates from Universities and took them on a 9 months intensive training to develop and sharpen their skills in various aspects of software development.
“We have groomed software developers and Information Technology experts to be part of Nigeria’s Digital transformation journey. The goal is to equip our young and growing youth population with requisite skills and knowledge of the 21st century application development.
“Sidmach is a leading Information technology solutions and services firm in Nigeria. We are committed to raising world-class solutions development experts that will make work smarter and live better while leveraging the array of cutting-edge tools available within the vast Microsoft domain and beyond,” he said.
Eke advised the graduates to maximise the skills they have learnt and make a living for themselves.