The Minister for Presidency, Hon. Babirye Milly Babalanda has commended Huawei Technologies for skilling Ugandans through different ICT programs like Seeds for the Future. Hon. Babalanda made the remarks during the launch of the 2022 Huawei Uganda Seeds for the Future program last Friday at Huawei offices in Kololo.
“In a special way, I would like to commend Huawei for living what they preach as one of the top ICT companies. The Seeds for the Future program was a gift to Uganda and was officially handed over to H.E Yoweri Museveni by China and Huawei in 2015,” said Hon. Babalanda.
“It is important to note that this program was given to the government to benefit the people of Uganda, and one of the mandates in my Ministry and the Office of the Presidency, in general, is to see to it that; programs such as Seeds for the Future program is adequately monitored and evaluated to achieve their intended objectives,” she said. “So I thank Huawei once again for their effort to make sure that they fulfill their promise of skilling Ugandans.”
Hon. Babalanda further said that the Seeds for the Future program is important because it is vital for the youth to have the skills, passion, and determination to develop and use their skills acquired to drive this country forward whether by starting their own company, working for a government entity, or work for another private company. “So it is important to treat this seed of knowledge from companies like Huawei with utmost importance,” she says.
She explains that the NRM government has significantly increased its spending in the area of Education in the last two years and hopes the investment will improve enrollment and quality of learning in Ugandan schools and raise the human capital necessary to sustain productivity and economic growth.
“The job market in Uganda is becoming more technologically driven and disruptive requiring high levels of digital, social, and life skills.” “The Seeds for the Future program by Huawei is one of the initiatives government can look up to among others, to beef its investment in technology,” she said.
Education and ICT Skilling play a fundamental and pioneering role with wide-ranging and long-lasting effects. The fast development of technology, ways of learning, productivity, and living are undergoing profound changes. ICT is exerting an ever-growing revolutionary influence on education and also enriching the channels, ways, and contents of people-to-people exchanges. Therefore, Huawei’s initiatives of the Seeds for the Future program are not only a skilling initiative but also a very meaningful and important people-to-people exchange activity.
Hon. Babalanda while concluding her remarks noted that the relationship between China and Uganda will continue to soar to great heights for the benefit of both countries.
Joy Tiko, a Makerere University graduand who took part in the previous Seeds for the Future program, lauded Huawei for giving her and her colleagues the experience and necessary skills that have helped them move places in the world of ICT.
“My team created a working prototype of a system that uses artificial intelligence to combat disease and pests. Because of that, we were chosen as the winner of the 2021 Huawei Seeds for the Future competition,” said Tiko.
Tiko further says that “With Huawei Seeds for the Future program, I improved my skills in the area of artificial intelligence, and I’m now working on new projects that use this technology.” “We thank Huawei for the enormous opportunity it gave us to put our skills on a wider platform and I believe our fellow youth too will learn from our experience.”
The Seeds for the Future program has been included in the Strategic Cooperation Advisor MOU signed by Huawei and the Ministry of ICT and National Guidance o ensure the smooth implementation and good results of the program.
The program aims at enhancing students’ capability to adapt to the ICT Industry as they learn about new emerging technologies and skills. This program has helped shape the curriculums of various universities since 2016.
Its also expected to enhance student ability to adapt to the innovation needs of the local market. This has played a very important part to enable them to get employment as soon as they leave their universities. Out of the 40 students who took part in the program since 2016 over 32 are employed directly by Huawei or other companies.
The skills attained in the program have enabled students to gain confidence which has helped them to excel in their careers.
This program has been an eye-opener and expanded the thinking horizons of the participants. They get to experience technology practically.