ICDL Africa conducted the Best Practice Awards Event that was held at UBUMWE GRANDE HOTEL in Kigali, Rwanda.
The Event was prepared by ICDL Africa team in collaboration with Rwanda Revenue Authority (RRA) that was representing the Workforce and University of Tourism Business and Technology (UTB) representing the Education Sector as first University in East, west, and Central Africa to incorporate the ICDL Programme in their curriculum.
A total of 40 staff from Rwanda Revenue Authority received their certificates having completed the Seven ICDL modules recommended by the Government of Rwanda. From this, a group of Twenty was selected to do the training of trainers. The twenty will be training the rest of the RRA staff in ICDL as the institution has agreed to certify all their staff in digital skills.
Different Accredited Test Centres were also present such as Life International Academy, Nu-Vision High School, King David Academy, Urukundo Village, Smart Village Initiative, Rwanda Management Institute, National Post Office of Rwanda, Computer Learning Centre and Business Development Fund.
The Government of Rwanda was represented by the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of ICT and Innovation who as the Guest of Honour and other delegates from same Ministry.
For the opening speech, The Permanent Secretary, Ministry of ICT and Innovation Ms Irere Claudette. She stressed on the good working relationship the Ministry has had with ICDL Africa and in her own words, she has enjoyed working with ICDL as “What ICDL Promises, they always deliver”. Representing ICDL, the ICDL Foundation CEO Damien O’Sullivan welcomed the audience thanking the ICDL Africa and the ATCs that were present for having organised a very successful event.
He also compared this with the way Singapore in Asia was selected when the ICDL Foundation identified the ICDL office in Asia
Damien O’Sullivan clarified the importance of new technology that is coming on board. With concrete examples, he pointed on how the use of ICT is Changing into Digital labour but also Changing nature of labour whereby It benefits in terms of intelligence work.
He shared a brief background of ICDL Foundation and the major reason behind ICDL Africa being Headquartered in Rwanda. He expressed how Rwanda shares some similarity history in terms of development with IRELAND, the Headquarters of ICDL Foundation. He, in particular stressed on the huge investment being allocated into education & technology sectors in the countries.
He shared statistics showing that Africa is not the only continent lagging behind in digital skills level, referring to a research report that was conducted by ICDL Foundation, that showed how 30% of the population in Europe is above the basic in terms of digital skills and the rest 70% of the population are not on the level of needed by ICDL.
In his conclusion, he acknowledged the effort of partnership with different bodies and a special recognition of University of Tourism Business and technology and Rwanda Revenue Authority as a combination of education & workforce sectors boosters.
He reiterated the major role of any Revenue Authority in a country, and this therefore this should be a chance to be considered for employees to enhance their digital skills. In regard to UTB, he mentioned that ICDL not only needed in Workforce but also education sector. Through learning and certifying in ICDL, it will be an added recognition for a student in the job market.
He also expressed the wish of the ICDL Foundation, for ICDL Africa to operate independently and still reach at the same standard as Europe. “ICDL is for Rwanda is for Africa.”, he said.
In closing, the ICDL Foundation CEO, asked the audience to spread out the message urging all present to inform others not buy ICDL but join the ICDL community, all this in the contribution to the development of a better future.
In the awarding ceremony, University of Tourism was recognized for integrating ICDL programme in their academic curriculum. The ATC also is targeting to train and certify 2000 students in this academic year of 2018-2019.
Rwanda Revenue was also awarded and recognized for making ICDL the standard Digital literacy programme for their workforce and has made it mandatory in their workforce.
The certificates were handed in presence of the ICDL foundation CEO, Deputy Commissioner in charge of ICT in Rwanda Revenue Authority and the Senior Technologist, ICT Skills Development at the Ministry of ICT and Innovation.
Talking to the audience, the vice chancellor from University of Tourism Business and Technology, Prof. Callixte Kabera was delighted to have received the award from ICDL Africa and being the first University in the region to integrate the ICDL programme in their academic curriculum.
He emphasized the measure 14 of the national digital talent policy that requires all the students to have digital skills certification provided by a globally benchmarked body. He said this is the reason ICDL has been adopted & integrated in their academic curriculum. Their objective is to have a big number of pioneers in digital literate graduates to the market.
He shared the vision & commitment of the university to take ICDL programme and looking forward to champion the training and widely encouraging other institutions to take part of the digital literacy journey.
Beside the two major awards given to RRA and UTB, Smart village and Nu-vision High School also received the Best Project awards as centres that showed their improvement in developing the digital literacy within the young students and rural citizens.
The Deputy Commissioner for Information and Technology at Rwanda Revenue Authority Mrs. Arlette Munezero who spoke on the behalf of the Commissioner General, appreciated the award given and acknowledged the importance of ICDL to be part of RRA workforce stating that she believes after the workforce training, her department will have enough time to focus on other areas of great impact to the institution as majority of the workforce will not be calling for support on issues that they can easily resolve with the skills they learn in ICDL.
She emphasised on about The MoU signed & agreed by Rwanda Revenue Authority to be accredited test centre. From the 40 pioneers staff trained, the institution is looking forward to embracing digital skills across the country in their daily work. This will ease the work in terms of efficiency, she said.
She closed her remark, by expressing her appreciation towards the leadership of the Government of Rwanda and the ICDL foundation for selecting Rwanda as headquarter of ICDL Africa.