Africa’s biggest hotel online booking portal, Hotels.ng owned by Mark Essien in a partnership with the Akwa Ibom State government is set to develop the tech sphere in the State with the training of 500 youths through a 3-months internship program.
This was disclosed journalists on Wednesday during a press briefing in Uyo by representatives of both Hotel Booking Limited and the State Ministry for Science and Technology. In his speech, the Commissioner for Science and Technology Dr. Nse Essien said that “the world’s economy is being driven by ICT and it is only through ICT that the State and Country can attain sustainable development and realize its full potential by creating more jobs for our youths which will lead to poverty alleviation, reduce youth restiveness as well as boost the state’s internally generated revenue.”
In his remark, Mr. Mark Essien, founder of Hotels.ng thanked the Akwa Ibom State government for accepting the program with open arms from inception which led to the signing of the MOU. He also appreciated the Dr. Nse for his support which has brought the project this far. “We believe that over the space of three months, we will be able to create at least 50 people that will be world-class software developers and they will immediately start generating revenue for themselves, for the people around them and for the state inn form of tax. And the remaining 450 people that will be left, we will plant that interest in them to know the path they will toe in the industry.”
“The objective of the programme we are starting and what we hope to get out of it is tied to the fact that software development and developers represent the future of our economy. Software development is one of the few industries that require a minimal capital to start. With a little bit of hard work, a laptop or a smart phone with internet connection, you can become self-sufficient and employ other people. For instance, I founded Hotels.ng in 2013 and since then we have raise over $2million in investment capital and has happened over the space of four years. Right now the company employs 120 people in Lagos and 30 in Akwa Ibom, many who have been selected through previous editions of the same internship program to create software talents and skills. Our constraint today is that we do not have enough software developers to employ. So, we decided to put people through a programme that will make them employable and fill the gap that we have in our company and other ICT companies. Being a software developer is a lucrative job and minimum salary of a developer is N150, 000, and so the software industry can be created in Akwa Ibom just like it is done in India and other climes across the globe”, Mr. Essien add.
Training starts September 1st, 2017 and registration can be done online via www.internship.hotels.ng, while participation for the programme can also be done remotely through provided the intended persons have basic computer skills, own a computer or smart phone. For those who cannot participate remotely can make use of the centre at the Ibom E-Library.
Trainees will be given certain task to do every week and by the end of the duration, plus a weekly allowance to aid participants take care of transportation, feeding and internet connection