Tanzania’s government and Tigo are making a digital bet on the future of its schools

The South African nation of Tanzania is making a bold push for the future. A future that will be driven by internet connectivity with overall impact on the quality of its citizens and on the economy of the nation. An ITU  2015 data for the average percentage of households with internet access is only 10.7% for Africa, lower than Europe’s estimated 82.1%. Tanzania’s government wants to upturn these numbers by providing internet connectivity across the country, not only to homes and businesses but to all secondary schools across the country.

Tanzania’s government through its Ministry of Communications, Works and Infrastructure recently signed a partnership with Tigo, the nation’s leading digital lifestyle company to roll-out internet access points in the country’s 700 secondary schools. Tigo Tanzania is distinguished as a fully-fledged digital lifestyle brand offering a diverse product portfolio in voice, SMS, high-speed internet and mobile financial services, Tigo has pioneered innovations such as the first Smartphone in Kiswahili, Facebook in Kiswahili, Tigo Pesa App, Tigo Music (Deezer) and East Africa’s first cross-border mobile money transfer with currency conversion.

As part of the agreement, the ministry will identify and provide a list of schools without computer labs to be connected and also guide the implementation of the project while Tigo will sponsor the infrastructural development in schools across the country that will include wiring classrooms and installation of wireless LAN with internet access points.

“It is through such partnerships that we shall be able to impart modern ICT skills and knowledge to the youth, to enable them to face the challenges of the ever-changing information trends in the society and global economy.” This was according to Prof. Faustine Kamuzora the Permanent Secretary for Ministry of Communications, Works and Infrastructure who made the statement while commending Tigo for its readiness to engage in public and private sector partnerships in order to help secondary school students in Tanzania.

The e-school’s project is among various projects that Tigo has undertaken to support community initiatives through the telecom’s corporate social responsibility portfolio. They include donation of over 2,700 desks to needy primary schools in a sustainable venture that is meant to alleviate the serious shortage of desks in the country’s schools. In 2015, in partnership with Dar Teknohama Business Incubator (DTBi), Tigo offered scholarships worth about $ 136,363 to nine students undertaking ICT courses in Tanzania’s local universities.

Tigo Chief Commercial Officer, Shavkat Berdiev while commenting on the company’s said, “We are grateful to the government for accepting to partner with Tigo in this very important initiative aiming at supporting the government vision of ensuring that all mankind benefit from the access and use of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) in various discipline to improve their social and economic situations”.