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Skills for Africa initiative launches first East African programme

Skills for Africa initiative launches first East African programme

The SAP Skills for Africa initiative has launched its first East African programme in Nairobi, Kenya.

The skills development initiative, first established in 2012, is organised between SAP Africa, its customers as well as various public and private sector partners. The objective is to train and certify graduates in SAP software and business solutions, as well as to secure opportunities for recruitment into the market.

According to Meena Confait, Head of Skills for Africa at SAP Africa, this year features the first expanded East African programme with the participation of partners and customers from Kenya as well as Ethiopia, Uganda and Rwanda.

"In 2013 and 2014, we provided training for 130 graduates in Kenya. In our expanded 2017 programme, we are able to train 55 candidates of which 40% are female. This builds on our organisational goal of promoting diversity in the workplace, and makes a significant contribution to unlocking the latent potential of Africa's sizeable female population."

"To support the growth and success of Africa's critical SME sector, we are proud to announce that the curriculum for East Africa now includes SAP Business One. This is one of the key success factors for the initiative: the focus on ensuring graduates learn the most relevant and business-critical skills that will immediately make them valuable contributors to the success of the partner and customer companies where they are placed."

The launch of this year's East African programme was held at the Kenya School of Government and brought together key role-players in the public and private sectors, as well as academia.

Robert Mugo, Ag. CEO, ICT Authority, said, "Kenya has over the past few years made digital skills development a national priority, with a range of initiatives driven by a number of government agencies and aimed at inspiring an affinity for technology from school level all the way to business and government. The Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Authority is a State Corporation that was established in 2013 to rationalise and streamline the management of all government of Kenya ICT functions."

Eng. Victor Kyalo, Principle Secretary Ministry of ICT, added, "With ICT underscored as an economic pillar in Kenya's Vision 2030, it is vital that we invest in the development of professional ICT skills through structured engagements with industry and public sector to ascertain what skills are required to run profitable businesses. This is what makes the SAP Skills for Africa scholarship very strategic for us."

According to Dr Gilbert Saggia, Managing Director, SAP East Africa, this year's initiative has already secured commitments from SAP partners and customers to place every one of the graduates from the current intake. "Nothing is more important to the future success of the African continent than unlocking the potential of its immense youthful talent pool. We thank our public and private sector partners for their support in ensuring we produce the practical digital skills that will drive Africa's economic engine in the coming decades."

The 2017 East Africa programme concludes in September 2017, followed by another South Africa chapter in the fourth quarter of this year.

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