Tullow Uganda Operations Pty Ltd, a subsidiary of Tullow Oil Plc, has handed over four computer labs and 65 computers to four government primary schools including; Ndandamire Primary school, Buliisa Primary school, Kaiso Primary school and Kyehoro Primary school in Buliisa and Hoima District.
Tullow Uganda continues to contribute to the sustainable economic growth and social development of Uganda and the Bunyoro region through different initiatives besides oil exploration.
In both Hoima and Buliisa districts, Tullow has invested over $5m in infrastructure projects supporting the areas of health and education as part of its corporate social investment programme.
This is in line with the company’s vision and strategy to create shared prosperity and create long term value for all stakeholders across all locations they operate.
Speaking at the computer lab handover and opening ceremony dubbed Project Kuha, at Kaiso Primary school, Jimmy Mugerwa, the Managing Director Tullow Uganda observed the impact ICT has on every aspect of human life and encouraged the invited guests in their respective capacities; as teachers, industry players, and government, to provide and equip the younger generation with the right tools and skills that will prepare them for life in the digital era.
The time is now, not tomorrow, to look at how ICT can be incorporated in our schools. Let us inspire pupils to be curious and interested in careers in the ICT world at an early age, mainly because they are the next generation of computer scientists and professionals. To achieve this, we must also render support and equip teachers to effectively teach ICT in schools,” he advised.
Mugerwa extended his gratitude to the Tullow Alumni Group Uganda (TAGU) which trained 65 teachers in computer literacy, who in return will pass on this knowledge to over 3,500 pupils who are set to benefit from the company’s Corporate Social Investment initiative.
The backdrop of this initiative is the reality that majority of the schools surveyed in Buliisa and Hoima district did not have any computing facilities for both administrative and teaching purposes, largely because they could not afford to buy the equipment.
According to Jimmy Mugerwa, “Majority of the schools surveyed did not have any computing facilities for both administrative and teaching purposes largely because they could not afford to buy the equipment.”
This project, therefore, seeks to provide an enabling environment for use of ICTs in rural primary schools by providing an enabling environment and offering train the trainer teaching sessions thereby promoting ICT education from early childhood and facilitating the mode of education through the provision of computers to the pupils.
To ensure this was a sustainable project, the computer labs are fitted with solar panels ensuring a more efficient way for the school to meet their energy needs by using renewable energy whilst benefiting from low cost, low energy internet and IT access.
Kadiri Kirungi, the LC5 Chairman Hoima while addressing guests commended Tullow Oil for their spirit in fostering ICT skills in Uganda.
“Today’s initiative is very much in line with the development agenda of the oil and gas sector and the National Oil and Gas Policy which provides guidelines for the use of our oil and gas to contribute to poverty eradication and create lasting value to society,” he said.
“The Government of Uganda commends Tullow Uganda for continuing to demonstrate its commitment to this cause through their various initiatives. The four solar-powered computer labs you are handing over today are a manifestation of the great work you are doing in the country,” he added.
In the FY 2019/20, Government allocated Shs146.2 billion to the ICT sector, a clear indication of its pertinent need to promote the much-needed support to improve the ICT Sector.
On the education front, he said, shs3.4 trillion was allocated to promote human capital development through education during the financial year.
Project Kuha’s major focus is integration and use of ICT in these rural primary schools within Tullow’s license area LA2 in Buliisa and Hoima.