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Internet affordability will grow access to education in Africa – Experts

Internet affordability will grow access to education in Africa – Experts

For more Africans especially rural dwellers to adopt online learning in Africa using technology, there is a need for cheaper internet service, education experts, have said.

Speaking at the 5th edition of the African Edu-Tech Conference hosted by the Nigerian-British Chamber of Commerce in partnership with Edu-first Nigeria Limited, they said technology and the internet are the way for the government to have education spread across the continent.

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David Brown, managing partner at D. Brown Consulting, said, affordable internet connectivity is one sure approach to drive the growth of education and boost learning outcomes.

Brown however said that the cost of the Internet is the main challenge hindering access to quality education in Nigeria and other countries in Africa.

According to him, Nigerians are very innovative, they can do the rest themselves if there is cheaper and easier access to the Internet, adding that government policies are required to drive down the cost of the Internet.

Ray Atelly, president/chairman of the Council of Nigerian-British Chamber of Commerce, said the conference seeks to explore the current state of EDTECH in Africa and to emphasise the considerable untapped potential for transforming education through technology by stressing the imperative role of governments and policymakers in creating an enabling environment for EDTECH collaborations and partnerships.

He commended the combined team for the time and effort put into the event in the past five years as the conference has reached over 10,000 attendees.

Moses Imayi, project director/CEO of Edufirst. ng said the African Edu-Tech Conference has grown to become a pivotal platform for fostering innovation and collaboration in the education technology sector in Africa.

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Commenting on the theme of the conference ‘Leveraging Collaboration and Partnership for EdTech Growth in Africa,’ Imayi said the theme resonates deeply with the mission of the organisation, adding that it is inspiring to see how various stakeholders are coming together to transform education through technology.

Seyi Adeyemi, chairman of the Schools and Education Committee, NBCC said the aim of the conference remains to provide a platform where government agencies, education professionals, and innovators will discuss how to revitalise the education system through technology and innovation.

According to him, the 5th edition of the Annual African Edu-Tech Conference provided a significant step toward transforming education in Africa, and it showcased the potential for growth and development in the educational sector through collaboration and partnerships.

“Education First Nigerian Limited (Edufirst.ng) and the Nigerian British Chamber of Commerce (NBCC) remain steadfast in their pursuit of advancing education in Africa through technology and collaborative initiatives. The African Edu-Tech Conference stands as a testament to their shared vision and tireless commitment to a brighter future for education in Africa,” Adeyemi said.

One of the conference’s highlights was a discussion panel on “The Pros and Cons of Online Learning in Africa,” which featured students and was moderated by a fellow student. Additionally, students presented innovative prototypes, with a project from Methodist Girls School emerging as the winner.

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A cash prize of N100,000 and five Exam Padi tablets were awarded to the school and students who won the innovative showcase at the conference sponsored by Exam Padi.