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German Govt Praises Edo Digital Progress Under Obaseki-led Adminstration

The German Government has commended Edo State for its impressive digital transformation efforts, acknowledging the successful implementation of German-funded projects and programs in the state.

The recognition was made during a visit by a German delegation, led by Susanne Schroeder, to Edo State Governor Godwin Obaseki on May 29, 2024.

Governor Obaseki, in his remark, expressed gratitude for Germany’s support, highlighting the significant impact on Edo State’s digital infrastructure, job creation, vocational skills training, and sustainable development. He emphasized that Germany’s assistance has been instrumental in addressing migration challenges and promoting economic growth.

Obaseki proposed strategic initiatives for continued collaboration, including; creating pathways for regular migration, introducing language programs, showcasing local skills, Initiating programs for women.

Obaseki said: “First was the mindset we were able to change with the programs you have put in place. So today, nobody wants to travel because they now see opportunities here. Also, the way we have implemented the programs have been real and practical; go to the Innovation Hub today and see the programs we are running with the young people and the source of livelihood it is creating and the career paths being carved out; it is real.

“One of the things we took away when we visited Germany was how your educational system supports job creation and that is one of the things we are doing with our own educational system in Edo today, in addition to the values of excellence and efficiency.

“When we look back at the successes we have achieved, it has been possible largely because of you and we want to thank you for it and say that at this critical junction we still need your support, particularly in terms of policy direction, and where to go next.

“I am going to be leaving in a few months’ time, so I am saying what is the future? We have built the foundation, we have first solved the infrastructure required to carry out our programs, we have some of the programs very well detailed, and we have trained thousands. We now need to create a market for them to sustain them both locally and internationally. We must also take advantage of the bilateral relationships and arrangements we have. We have young men and women who can provide technological services to Germany from here; areas like health services are areas we should look at exploring.”

Earlier in her address, Susanne Schroeder, Head of Development Cooperation at the German Embassy in Nigeria, emphasized that the purpose of the visit was to review ongoing projects implemented in collaboration with Edo State Government. She provided positive feedback on the projects executed under the Obaseki-led administration, noting that the successful synergy between Edo State and German agencies, which has resulted in substantial advancements in technology, education, and public services, was possible as a result of the state government’s commitment to the successful implementation of German-supported initiatives.

She added that the Cooperation promises further growth and development, which would benefit the citizens of Edo State and strengthen the ties between Nigeria and Germany.

According to Schroeder, “Your Excellency, thank you for having us today; it is a great honor to meet you in person, as this is my first visit to Benin City after three attempts. I have a delegation here from Germany, GIZ, the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development who are here for consultation with ECOWAS as well as Nigeria.

“The Senior policy officer responsible for Nigeria wanted to visit Benin City to see not only the place but also the projects that we are implementing here in cooperation with your administration and that is the purpose of her visit. I am looking forward to what you are implementing here and to further exchange with your administration.”

She added: “We had dinner yesterday, where the Commissioner for Arts, Culture and Tourism and the honorable Commissioner for Digital Economy and other members of government, had a very fruitful exchange on what is going on here in Edo State.

“And I must say I am impressed by what you have achieved in your tenure, especially in the way of digitalization and it reminded me of Rwanda which I visited a few months ago. I always feel that Rwanda is a model of what can be achieved if digitalization is done properly.

“Thank you so much for your support and the support of the Commissioners and the rest of your team to our colleagues at the GIZ. Without it, they would not have achieved anything.”

Also in attendance were; Edo State Commissioner for Arts, Culture, Tourism and Diaspora Affairs, Uyi Oduwa-Malaka; Commissioner for Communication and Orientation, Chris Nehikhare; Managing Director, Edo State Skills Development Agency, Violet Obiokoro, among others.

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