The 2020 edition of the Huawei Global ICT Competition which kicked off on Thursday has pooled in over 50,000 students from across 14 countries in Africa.
In a statement, Huawei noted that globally the competition has covered over 70 countries, with 150,000 contestants from more than 2,000 universities and colleges.
Launched in Africa in 2015, the Huawei ICT Competition uses an invitation-based registration system and is oriented to colleges and universities participating in Huawei ICT Academy’s Innovation Talent Center Program.
“The digital divide is actually widening under the new normal caused by the Covid-19 pandemic. As
people migrate more work and study online, the digitally disadvantaged people are hit harder,” Liao Yong, Huawei Southern Africa VP said at the opening ceremony that was attended by industry partners, UNESCO, and students.
In a previous webinar organised by UNESCO, ICT experts identified digital infrastructure as one of the prominent challenges that tertiary institutions in Africa face.
“Holding the online version of ICT competition during the pandemic has a unique value, it shows that
Huawei, as a pioneer in building African digital infrastructure, also takes its talent strategy very seriously.
It encompasses three aspects; digital upskilling ICT professionals, encouraging and enabling ICT
students, and promote ICT literacy among ordinary people,” Liao said.
In Nigeria, schools like Ahmadu Bello University (ABU), Zaria, are participating in the competition, and some of the students say they have seen significant ICT upskill.
“I have trained ahead of the competition’s exam and shortly after, I was granted the opportunity to do an internship at the Huawei Nigeria headquarters in Abuja.
Ydo Tao, acting Director of UNESCO International Bureau of Education described Huawei as playing an exemplary role in supporting initiatives that create, innovate and deliver ICT skills for the continent.