Friday, April 19, 2024
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AU summit participants urge Africa to re-conceive education system that promote technology

Africa should re-conceive the education system in a way that would promote technology for the better future of the continent in all aspects, participants of the 37th African Union (AU) Summit told ENA.

The 37th Ordinary Session of the AU Assembly of the Heads of State and Government was underway for two days, with the aim of improving the state of education on the continent and fast-track the realization of Africa’s development endeavors.

The annual summit that brought together African leaders from AU member states took place under the theme: “Educate an African fit for the 21st Century: Building resilient education systems for increased access to inclusive, lifelong, quality and relevant learning in Africa” at the AU Headquarters in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

Approached by ENA, Communication Head of the African Prosperity Network, Prince Moses Ofori-Atta said that Africa needs to build new technology focused educational systems that fits with the 21st century.

“When we say our education approach should be technology focused, it means that we need to build systems that speak to technology,” Ofori-Atta said.

According to the head, Africa has untapped potential in terms of natural resources and huge population. However, it is unfortunate that the continent has still remained far behind in technological advancement and competing with the other part of the world in many parameters.

For him, the lack of transformed education system is one of the major bottlenecks to ensure inclusive prosperity in Africa.

“Thus, we have to be able to review and re-conceive the type of educational systems that Africa has in place,” Ofori-Atta underlined.

Particularly, the head believes the future education system of this continent will determine its destiny in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.

“Now these educational systems should be able to bring the new dimension that we’re looking at in terms of rearranging our educational space for young people (with) the ability to plug them into a new employment sector. When you look around the world, technology is what is producing a lot of jobs. That’s why education is essential.”

To this end, Africans should rethink how to plug themselves into the new economy ecosystem which is technology based and they should look inward.

On her part, Ahunna Eziakonwa, Assistant Secretary-General of UNDP and Director of UNDP’s Regional Bureau for Africa said that a better education system should be at the heart of Africa’s development.

“If we don’t have education for our children, it is going to be extremely difficult to actually power development on the continent,” she said.

The assistant secretary-general underscored that the African Union in its 37th annual summit, has chosen education, the best and most relevant topic of the day to be talking about.

Eziakonwa also underlined that education in Africa needs a new approach to exploit the skill of our young people and make them competitive in the global market.

“We need to fix our education system. And this is really the heart of the matter, here is how we go from learning to earning and our work at the country level as UNDP is really supporting to build that ecosystem in the governance, architecture. So, we’re able to bring systems and institutions that are conducive for the future of work.”

Technology is making a huge difference in every way, the assistant secretary-general pointed out.

Therefore, she stressed that making those young people who have access to the infrastructure for technology to be technologically savvy, digital as well to really put them in a better position to compete in the world.

Following the African Union puts a spotlight on education in 2024, the summit convened on how to enhance education and skills to meet the continental vision and market needs, and further deliberated on the progress, challenges and prospects of Africa’s overall development, it was indicated.


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