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AfDB Initiative To Empower 5o Million Youth In Africa By 2025


(AFRICAN EXAMINER) – African Development Bank (AfDB) is poised to empower and equip 50 million youth with employable skills by 2025 through its Jobs for Youth in Africa Initiative.

The Bank said the initiative also seeks to create 25 million jobs in agriculture, information, communication and technology fields, and other key industries across the continent.

This was disclosed at the launch of the newest digital training centres of the AfDB’s Coding for Employment programme, which equips African youth with the digital skills they need to contribute meaningfully to the global digital economy,

The Bank held virtual and in-person ribbon-cutting ceremonies for three new additional centres of excellence in March this year. Two of the centres are in Nigeria, one at Covenant University in Ogun State and the other located at Gombe State University, Gombe State. The third centre of excellence is situated on Kenya’s University of Nairobi campus.

The ceremonies took place at Covenant University and the University of Nairobi. Bank representatives, Coding for Employment partners and university staff attended.

The new centres of excellence are equipped with 50 computers, ergonomic furniture in classroom-style learning stations, and informal networking areas. Students enrolled in Coding for Employment programmes gain access to free courses in web design, app development, data science, and digital marketing, among others.

The programme is a key component of the African Development Bank Group’s Jobs for Youth in Africa Initiative, which aims to put Africa’s youth on a path to prosperity.

The centres’ opening brings to seven the number of Coding for Employment-branded learning spaces across the continent, including in Rwanda, Senegal, and Côte d’Ivoire. Coding for Employment plans to open 130 centres across Africa by 2025.



Initially, the centres will serve participants in Coding for Employment’s Digital Ambassadors programme, a new, intensive peer-to-peer training model set to expand digital skills to more African youth, especially in rural communities where internet connectivity is low.

Notably, the programme will set aside half of their initial training slots to women applicants, the Bank said on International Girls in Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Day. Moreover, it is part of a foundational pipeline for girls and young women to pursue science and technology-related careers.

AfDB’s Director for Human Capital, Youth and Skills Development, Martha Phiri said the inauguration of the new addition additional centres is indicative of the Bank’s commitment to the promotion of gender equality in every segment of the society in Africa.

“This launch is a reflection of the Bank’s strong commitment to creating a world where gender equality is true in the classroom, in the boardroom, and in every sector of the economy in order to build a more inclusive, innovative, and resilient African society”, she said.

According to the International Telecommunication Union (, which organizes the Girls in ICT Day, only 30 percent of the world’s tech science and technology professionals are women.

Microsoft’s Nigeria Country Manager, Olatomiwa Williams noted that socio-cultural norms, beliefs, and bias have long informed how women are perceived and limited the opportunities for women to pursue careers in the technology field.

”Breaking these biases requires exposing young girls to coding and to STEM-related fields very early on, for them to see it as a viable career path”, she stressed.


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