ICT summit boosts youthful innovation
Young people who attended the third Information and Communication Technology (ICT) summit were thrilled with the demonstrations and outcomes shared at the summit last week.
Hafeni Munenguni, who is pleased to have attended, believes the summit was a success, as it gave a platform for innovative young Namibians to share their views and ideas on which direction Namibia as a whole should go to develop and achieve its goals through innovation and technology.
Munenguni was impressed with how innovative Namibian youth are. “We, as the youth, are moving in the right direction using our natural resources to work for ourselves. What stood out for me the most was the solar taxi,” he says.
Lucy Riekert said the summit was useful and although Namibian youth are creative, they need support to activate their projects. “I’m surprised with what my fellow youths came up with. All these ideas can change our economy and that is a major contribution from the part of the youth, so it’s now up to those who can help finance these projects to come forward and do their part,” says Riekert.
The three-day summit – of which the third day was dedicated to youth involved in ICT – provided them a platform to showcase their products, projects and innovations. The mission of the summit was to expose the youth to the latest ICT developments and trends, locally, regionally and internationally and at the same time focus on how to improve life using ICT.
The National ICT summit picked a befitting theme, namely: ‘Youth ICT hoping to Innovate and Transform the Information and Communication Technology Sphere.”
A member of the parliamentary standing committee on ICT, Bernadette Jagger, said if the youth are looking for inspiration for ICT innovation, they should look around them and note the social and economic challenges faced by fellow citizens and use ICT to solve the problems, improve and grow the country and advance its people and the economy.
Jagger challenged the youth to take a critical look at the society around them and use what they see for development purposes. “Young people should never allow themselves to sit idly. With the [worrisome] current economic status and the Fitch rating, it is time for the Namibian youth to find solutions to today’s problems,” she advised.
The summit saw young innovators exhibit projects and ideas, some of which are already up and running, while others are still waiting on financial support or collaboration to operate.
Some of the innovation projects and presentations included an app to combat gender-based violence, EduBox, autonomous vehicles, a solar car, smart forms, wi-fi kiosks that will provide internet to the CBD, and the Save My City project.
The event also featured workshops and presentations from leaders in the global ICT industry.