The Ministry of Post, Telecom and Technology (MPTT) has re-launched the National Telecom Training Institute (NTTI), taking a new approach to the delivery of ICT training to promote technical capacity building in Somalia.
Established in 1976, the Institute was supported by the International Telecom Union (ITU) and UNDP through the provision of equipment and training, but ceased its operations in 1991. However, several attempts have been made in the last few years to re-operationalize it, but the main challenge was the lack of necessary equipment and ICT infrastructure that could allow the trainees to gain ICT skills.
NTTI is now equipped with a computer and Cisco labs and trainees have now access to the Government Internet network, the Internet Exchange Point, and the domain name system through the National Communications Authority.
Ali Afey, director of Telecom from Ministry and also an alumnus from NTTI, briefly discussed the history of NTTI and its role in producing the communications engineers for public sector institutions in the past. Also speaking on behalf of the ICT sector, Da’ud Jaite from NationLink Telecom and also an alumnus from NTTI, said he was delighted to attend this ceremony. He said he was ready to volunteer and contribute to the development of the Institute.
Representing the federal states, the minister for Post, Telecom and Technology of GalMudug State, Ahmed Dubbad Ali, thanked the Ministry for inviting him to witness this historic event.
Deputy Minister of Finance and Minister of Higher Education noted that ICT initiatives and skills could greatly contribute to employment, income generation and poverty reduction.
H. E. Abdi Ashur Hassan, the Minister for Post, Telecom and Technology said NTTI would meet the skill requirements of the sector and generate more employment especially for the youth. He thanked the Somali Research and Education Network (Somali REN), for helping establish the computer lab, website, and curriculum development for the Institute. “Now the education sector has done their contribution, we want the telecom sector to help rebuild the premises of NTTI because they will be beneficiaries of this institution” the minister pointed out.
In his closing remarks, the Prime Minister, H. E. Hassan Ali Khaire, said this event highlights the vision of the government to transform the Somali economy to digital. He said if we want to develop we need a qualified and trained labor force, harness the power of technology, as well as modernize and streamline our institutions.
He said Somalia’s economy could no longer depend on substance farming and livestock, when the world is competing on technology. “No economy can develop without skilled labor, so we need to diversify our economy and start investing in technology,” concluded the Prime Minister.