Technology is driving the world and the Plateau State government is cooking something with Facebook, Google, Microsoft and local organisations.

The central Nigerian State says it is initiating talks with the multinationals and development partners to develop Information and Communication Technology (ICT) in the state.

Plateau State has had its own share of bandits’ attack on communities and the government is exploring ways to keep its youths busy.  

The Commissioner for Science and Technology, Mr Dan Manjang, told members of the Nigerian Union of Journalists (NUJ) Plateau Council that the desire of the government to partner with these organisations was in a bid to facilitate the development of ICT skills of its people, especially the youths, through training using these platforms. 

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“We are consulting with our development partners and will soon commence talks with Facebook, Google, Microsoft and some other local organisations to ensure the skills of the Plateau people are harnessed,’’ he said. 

The commissioner said the state government was planning a science and technology summit that it hopes would herald the formulation of a viable science policy. 

"The relevant technology centres in our state presently produces mobile aids for physically challenged people and our science production centre produces laboratory equipment for secondary and tertiary institutions. 

"The works from our technology incubation centre have been presented at international forums such as a drone produced there was presented at a competition in Indonesia. 

"We emerged third at the competition; a tractor and bullet-proof vests and many more have been produced at the centre. 

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"The state government wants to encourage these inventors to do more by revamping these centres and creating a more enabling environment through training and provision of equipment and infrastructure," he said.

The Chairman, Plateau Correspondents Chapel of NUJ, Mr Aminu Yusuf,  said the visit was to congratulate the commissioner on his new appointment and discuss on possible collaborations.

One area the state is lagging behind is internet penetration.

A report released last year on Internet Penetration by the National Bureau of Statistics showed that the state with 4,075,392 population had 2,083,706 active internet users in Q3 of 2017 which was just 5.10% growth from what it was in the Q3 of 2016 which was 1,982,502.

This highlights one area that the state could first be looking at in its collaboration with the multinationals and development partners.

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