Geingob calls for revision of education curriculum

President Hage Geingob says Namibia’s education system should be transformed with a bias towards a more sustainable and inclusive industrialisation drive.

He added that primary and secondary learners need to be equipped with the combination of verbal, written communication and logical and numerical skills that will equip them with the skills to code.

"Our education system and industry have a relatively low capacity to react to the rapid technological changes and the impacts are visible through the low transition into the labour market. Sustainable and inclusive industrialisation can be achieved through a fundamental shift in how we are educating our children," he said on Wednesday during the official opening of the Namibia Fourth Industrial Revolution Conference.

Geingob said that this is the country's opportunity to drive inclusive economic growth, through education, reskilling and leveraging information, with the communication technologies as a tool to leapfrog innovation.

"One leverage point is equipping primary and secondary learners with the combination of verbal and written communication; logical and numerical skills, to nurture the ability to code and think computationally and by so doing, develop holistic problem-solving skills. It has become increasingly important to deliver multi-disciplinary training in our institutions of higher learning, through blended curricula," he said.

To achieve this, the president says that investments into Research and Development (R&D) must be prioritised.

"A stronger compact is required between industry and institutions of higher Learning, to identify priority areas for R&D and innovation, particularly as we apply the lessons from the COVID-19 pandemic and what I have termed “Vaccine Apartheid” induced by global inequities, trade and power dynamics in the supply of life-saving COVID-19 vaccines and attendant equipment," he added.

He asserts that as African Union Champion and member of the Committee of Ten Heads of State on Education, Science, and Technology, they have committed AU Member States to channeling no less than 0.1% of GDP towards R&D.

Furthermore, Geingob says that the country's new golden child, green energy will be the catalyst for Namibia's rapid adoption of 4IR technologies and this green economy will act as an enabler for production and advanced manufacturing systems, communication networks, education, healthcare, government, and community services.

"Namibia has embarked on a green future, where we are positioning ourselves as a global producer of green hydrogen and ammonia. Not only do we want to produce green hydrogen for the world, but we want to utilise it in Namibia and include our citizens in the entire production value chain, he said.

Adding that, "this new industry will serve as catalyst for Namibia’s rapid adoption of 4IR technologies, while positively contributing to the global fight against climate change the Industrial Revolution (4IR) technologies contribute to this green economy as an enabler for production and advanced manufacturing systems, communication networks, education, healthcare, government and community services."

The Fourth Industrial Revolution was coined and defined in 2015 by Klaus Schwab, Executive Chairman of the World Economic Forum, to broadly mean a fusion of technologies across the cyber, physical, and biological spheres, as well as rapid advances in technology that resulted in emerging technologies such as Artificial Intelligence amongst others.

Wednesday’s national policy dialogue aims to validate the work of the Namibia 4th Industrial Revolution Task Force, convened under the theme “4th Industrial Revolution (4IR) as an enabler of green and inclusive industrialization.”

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Last modified on Friday, 10 June 2022 08:51

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