In the heart of Mbooni, Makueni County, a promising opportunity for the local youth has emerged with the unveiling of Jitume Digital Labs at the David Mbithi Wambuli Technical and Vocational College. This initiative aims to nurture digital skills among the youth, paving the way for them to harness the potential of the ever-expanding digital economy.
Eliud Owalo, the Cabinet Secretary for Information, Communication, and Digital Economy, expressed the government’s expectations regarding this venture. “Our expectation is that by providing this facility, the youth of Mbooni will upscale their digital knowledge and take advantage of the digital economy we are creating,” he stated.
The Jitume Digital Enablement Program stands as a bold national government initiative designed to empower at least one million young individuals with the necessary skills and infrastructure required to participate in the digital economy. This initiative aligns with President Ruto’s commitment to providing opportunities for the nation’s youth, creating a multitude of job prospects in the process. It encourages young people to proactively access digital resources and become certified in various digital competencies, positioning them for the opportunities brought about by the Fourth Industrial Revolution.
The government’s comprehensive plan involves the installation of 23,000 Virtual Desktop Infrastructures (VDIs) across more than 200 Jitume Hubs dispersed throughout the country. Already, 42 Jitume Labs have been launched since the program’s inception in December 2022.
John Paul Okwiri, the CEO of Konza Technopolis, shared insights into the program’s progress, stating, “We have installed 100 VDIs, connected them to the internet to empower users to enhance their digital skills. We anticipate that this will enable them to become active participants in the digital economy, ultimately creating job opportunities and securing a decent income.”
In addition to the Digital Labs, the government is introducing public Wi-Fi hotspots and extending the fiber optic cable infrastructure by an impressive 1,000 kilometers. This expansion is set to boost connectivity in the region and facilitate access to digital resources for the youth.
“The government is steadfast in its commitment to bolstering internet access as it leverages the potential of information and communication technology to transform the nation’s economy. The aim is to empower our youth to tap into new career prospects that have emerged in the past decade, ranging from transcription, editing, photography, blogging, professional online training, software as a service, artistic performance, and many more,” emphasized Owalo.
The Jitume Digital Lab launch in Makueni marks a significant stride towards providing the youth with the tools and skills they need to thrive in the digital age. It’s a testament to the government’s commitment to inclusive growth and creating opportunities for the nation’s young talents. As these digital pioneers embrace the Fourth Industrial Revolution, they’re set to play a pivotal role in shaping Kenya’s digital future.