The government of Kenya, led by the Ministry of ICT, Innovation and Youth Affairs is poised to ramp up the level of technological skill capacity among its ICT workforce across the country in a new deal signed today where Huawei Kenya Engineering Training Academy has become an authorized training center for ICT skills.
In the agreement unveiled today between Cabinet Secretary for ICT and Youth Affairs Hon. Joe Mucheru and Huawei Kenya Chief Executive Officer Will Meng, 20,000 officers, professionals and students will be taken through a comprehensive training program in line with the progressive digitization and digitalization of government services.
“As a Ministry we appreciate the commitment and support provided by Huawei not only in contributing to developing Kenya’s ICT infrastructure but also in elevating ICT skills across various levels. This new program, the largest of its kind in our history, is akin to the software development part of ICT capacity building and is expected to take three years. In this period, we will advance the skill sets of government officers who have attained different levels of certification,” said Hon. Mucheru, pointing out that the final training certification will be recognized by the Ministry of Public Service, Gender, Senior Citizens Affairs and Special Programs in a formal skills database.
He explained that it followed the government’s commitment to increase the number of services that Kenyans can access online in a bid to ease public services and information provision. Mucheru noted that it is grounded on findings from the ICT Authority’s ‘Talent Cultivation for Kenya’s Digital Economy’ White Paper released in November 2021 which reported that 55% of jobs in Kenya by 2030 will require digital skills and that the country’s digital economy is expected to generate 9.24% of the total GDP by 2025. One of its key recommendations was to scale-up public-private sector initiatives and certification programs to meet the expected demand.
“Combining the capabilities of the private sector with those of the public sector has proven to be a successful approach to helping unlock the country’s potential and boost growth. We believe that providing training to public officers in the use of technology is essential in enforcing many small improvements that have substantial impacts therefore unlocking the potential of the government”, said Huawei Kenya Chief Executive Officer Will Meng, adding that the firm will foot the total cost of the training exercises.
At the time of the announcement, 900 civil servants from across various government agencies also graduated from a pilot of the capacity building program. 12 of them were awarded for their outstanding performance. The training was categorized into two cohorts covering technical and non-technical training. The technical training comprised knowledge on the latest cutting-edge technologies including Cloud Computing, Artificial Intelligence, Internet of Things, Big Data, Networks Security, Digital Economy, E-Government and Smart Cities among other ICT trends. The non-technical training focused on ICT transformation, cybersecurity and information security.
“As we embark on this new collaboration between The Ministry of ICT, Innovation and Youth Affairs and Huawei on ICT Talent Development we will address the existing gaps within the industry and academia and instill new skills among the existing public sector workforce.” stated Principal Secretary Jerome Ochieng’.
The collaboration agreement will see the two organizations partner over the next three years to scale up ICT capabilities countrywide as government services increasingly go online and more Kenyans embrace digital connectivity.