National Coordinator for SMART Zambia Institute, Martine Mtonga, says the challenge faced by schools that do not use Information and Communication Technology (ICT) to enhance teaching and learning has led to Zambia’s slow pace to close the digital divide.
Dr Mtonga says the lack of ICTs in some schools has led to Zambia’s slow pace to close the digital divide adding that there is need therefore to use of ICT in schools to overcome the challenges of improving efficiency and productivity.
“The challenge faced by schools in Zambia that do not use ICT as a means of enhancing teaching and learning has led to Zambia’s slow pace to close the digital divide. The use of ICT in schools to enhance learning could help overcome some of the challenges of improving the efficiency and productivity of both learning and teaching in Zambian schools, thereby narrowing the digital divide and improving the quality of learning,”, he said.
ZANIS reports that the National Coordinator said this when he officiated at the handover ceremony of the 20 computers held at Chisamba Secondary School Huawei Technologies-Zambia Limited .
Dr Mtonga said President Edgar Lungu, through the SMART Zambia’s transformational programme for improved service delivery, envisions a prosperous nation where all young people will have access to education under a Zambia that offers equal opportunities.
He said the donation was testimony of the SMART Zambia Institute facilitation of a prosperous Zambia where innovation forms the backbone of the socio-economic development of the country.
He said the computers donated to Kaputi and Chisamba Secondary Schools respectively , demonstrates the aspiration of SMART partnership and collaboration efforts founded on his department’s SMART Zambia Agenda.
Dr Mtonga, who is also Permanent Secretary in the Office of the President, thanked Huawei Technologies-Zambia Limited for the donation and encouraged other corporate business houses to give back to the community.
The colourful handover ceremony was also attended by Chief Chamuka of the Lenje people of Chisamba district.
Dr Mtonga paid gratitude to the traditional ruler , saying the government feels good when traditional leaders take a leading role in development and pledged government’s support to such traditional leaders.
“The government feels good when traditional leaders take the leading role in development. We will always help such chiefs where needs arise,” Dr Mtonga said.
And Chief Chamuka said the world has gone computerized and urged the teachers to research for their academic work.
The traditional leader said technology form the blood life of the academia because whatever one wants to do hinges on the use of the computers.
Meanwhile, Huawei Technologies Country Director, Emilion Ming, urged the pupils at the two learning institutions to put the computers to good use and help develop the country.
Meanwhile, SMART Zambia Institute, in collaboration with the Ministry of General Education, has conceived the SMART Zambia Phase II Broadband and capacity building project with a component of electronic education.
Dr. Mtonga who disclosed He said under the project, SMART Zambia Institute will provide 75, 000 computer tablets loaded with the teaching and learning materials for elementary education.
“To realize this noble vision, SMART Zambia Institute, in collaboration with the Ministry of Education, commenced the development of strategic mechanism of implementation which has resulted in the SMART Zambia Phase II Broadband and Capacity Building project with a component of electronic education,” Dr Mtonga said.
He added that the distribution of the tablets will be done in January, 2018, and that priority will be given to rural schools.
Dr Mtonga further said there is need to build capacities of teachers in ICT in order to enable them effectively deliver quality and affordable education to the learners.