ATC (American Tower Corporation) Ghana, a leading provider of telecommunications infrastructure, has inaugurated an IT centre in Accra in a bid to bridge the digital divide and by extension, drive the development of highly skilled professionals for the country’s telecommunications industry.
Situated at the Ghana Girl Guides Training Centre at Achimota, the facility is an equip-learning centre that utilises uninterrupted power supply and broadband connection from the company’s tower sites.
“As technology becomes more affordable and Internet access seems ubiquitous, digital divide still exists around the globe, and this is what we seek to do with our digital communities,” Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of ATC Ghana, Ashutosh Singh, commented.
Touching on the location of the centre, Mr. Singh said it is located strategically close to basic schools to ensure easy access to aid teaching and learning, adding that: “It is expected to serve all the basic schools not just in the Achimota area, but beyond”.
He noted that the programme is also in line with the government’s vision to digitise all aspects of the Ghanaian economy; hence, the company is proud to play a role in supporting this vision of inclusive digital economy while encouraging many brilliant young people to go into the STEM space.
In addition to the centre in Achimota, ATC has completed similar IT centres in other areas, with eight expected to be handed over in the coming days. The move by the company to bridge the digital divide falls under the Digital Communities programme, one of the key flagship initiatives of the company.
“Since 2018, ATC Ghana has completed 10 fully-equipped centres which are currently in use across the country in areas such Bator, Jamasi and others. This year, additional nine have been completed, one of which we are commissioning here today. The rest are in some places like Techimantia, Mangoase, among others, which will be commissioned in the coming days,” he said.
The Minister of Education, Dr. Yaw Adutwum, in a speech read on his behalf, outlined two significant outcomes of the partnership between his ministry and ATC Ghana.
“This partnership is not only marking a significant step toward bridging the digital divide, but it’s also empowering our girls around the country through access to ICT education and information,” he stated.
He further reiterated that the establishment of the digital communities is a testament to the government’s commitment in ensuring that every Ghanaian has access to the transformative power of technology.
While he emphasised on the relevance of equipping students with the necessary digital tools and skills in a digital age, he urged the students to take full advantage of the facility to develop and hone their skills in the area of ICT.
The US Ambassador to Ghana, Virginia Palmer, for her part, said as Ghanaian students compete with other students across the globe, it behooves on leaders to create the pathways for Ghanaian youths to succeed and access more opportunities.