Botswana Government establishes ICT Sector Committee
By John Churu, Gaborone, Botswana
The government, through the Botswana Human Resource Development Council (HRDC) has sought to include Information and Communication Technology (ICT), Research, Innovation Science and Technology as some of the sectors that would form committees to help with the national human resource development. All in all, the HRDC has identified twelve sectors in Botswana for which all have been invited to form committees.
The Chairman of the newly established Information and Communication Technology (ICT), Research, Innovation Science and Technology sector committee in Tshepo Tsheko who is currently the Manager at the First Step Ventures from the Botswana Innovation Hub and he is deputised by Oscar Chiwira, who is the Dean in the faculty of Commerce at Ba Isago University College.
“The establishment of the sector committees will ensure that there is a direct linkage between the skills developed and the needs of the fast changing economy,” Nancy Diphupu, Manager, Human Resource Planning at HRDC told an inagural workshop on the rationale for coming up with these sectors.
Diphupu said this approach has been adopted with some success in Mauritius, Singapore, Hong Kong and notably Canada which currently has 30 pan-Canadian sectors involving over half of Canada’s labour market.
“The key purpose of the Sector Human Resource Development Committees is to provide a single nexus which focuses on determining the human resource development needs and designing a collaborative education and skills training and development response that will enable the sector tothrive and succeed,” added Diphupu.
She said the role of the sectors will be to: ensure a co-ordinated approach to HRD planning, determine common priorities of action, facilitate the integration of policies and programmes and ultimately provide a forum where industry, education and skills training can work together in a strategic collaborative alliance.
Speaking at the same launch, the acting CEO of HRDC Dr. Patrick Molutsi said his organisation valued research and innovation so much that it has pride of place there. “Research and innovation is one of functions. We need to develop skills in that respect becuse the skills that we had of late are not being renewed. We had our innovations from ong back that are now discontinued. We are not rerplacing them. We need to develop new ways of coming up with jobs in the areas of innovation and research. We need to put more emphasis on innovation.”
According to the HRDC, the functions of the newly established committees include initiating and overseeing the development and periodic review of sector specific HRDC plans and research studies as well as to provide advice on appropriate measures to deal with any mismatch between demand and supply of human resources in the sector, among others.