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Source: Botswana Daily News
Gaborone — Minister of Infrastructure, Science and Technology, Mr Nonofo Molefhi, says government is committed to empowerment of girls and women through extensive use of ICTs.

Speaking at launch of the Digital Institute for Girls and Women in Gaborone recently, Minister Molefhi said in a traditional society, women provided a supporting role but in modern Botswana those stereotypes had changed.

He noted that Batswana ideals and aspirations were not those of yesterday but tomorrow because they invested in capital development especially in the ICT area.

The minister highlighted the need to invest in local content that spoke to Batswana in all sectors be it entertainment, agriculture or culture.

He also noted that it was pertinent that women and girls were included in expansion of the digital world and that their voices shaped the agenda to meet sustainable development demands of the nation.

"In order to close the growing digital divide we must ensure that we create an enabling environment for the growth of ICTs by strengthening mutually reinforcing functions like investment in infrastructure, ICT education and training among others," he said.

Furthermore, he said it was their ambition to get Botswana to be a globally competitive, knowledge and information society where lasting improvements in social, economic and cultural development was achieved through effective use of ICT.

Meanwhile, he congratulated Emang Basadi and Knowledge Ecosystems for the joint effort in establishing the programme, adding the wish was to see girls and women take advantage of it to acquire proficient ICT skills.

Emang Basadi executive director, Ms Ida Mokereitane stated that the institute was one of a kind in Botswana that would change the ICT landscape for girls.

Ms Mokereitane highlighted that ICT can be a medium which gender barriers and stereotypes were broken to attain equality for all by giving access to women and girls.

She said for any institution in the world to acquire competitiveness required to be ICT knowledgeable.

Again, she said the aim of the institution was to provide education mentorship training and create girls network for information sharing and imparting of ICT skills.

Nonetheless, she indicated that the institution would not only benefit women and girls in Botswana but all women in the SADC region.

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