As part of measures to ensure Ghanaian women take keen interest in technology and cybersecurity issues in the country, the Ministry of Communication has begun nationwide campaign in Senior High Schools to educate women and also make them aware of the already job opportunities in the sector.
Speaking at a day’s workshop for Women in Technology and Cybersecurity issues on the themed, “Empowering Woman to Step into Technology and Cybersecurity Careers,” the Minister of Communication, Mrs. Ursula Owusu-Ekuful said the ministry took the opportunity to train girls in Senior High Schools across the country on the need to be conscious of their lives.
Mrs. Owusu-Ekuful said the training is targeting girl schools and wants to train at least 60,000 girls on cybersecurity issues to be aware of the effect of nude photos across the digital space.
She said the training which started in the Ashanti Region has already touch base with 20,000 girls who really show keen interest on cybersecurity issues and wants to take courses in the sector to further develop their interest.
“What we are going to do next is to establish various clubs where we would constantly engage them and create awareness out of which some will develop the desire to work in this field,” she stated.
Mrs. Owusu-Ekuful said there are already job opportunities in the cybersecurity space where Ghanaian women need to take up the challenge in that sector to develop themselves like their male colleagues.
She said Ghana has identify 189 agencies as critical information structures and need to build up their cyber defenses to protect the vulnerable systems that they have and that they would need professionals to help them.
The workshop brought together accomplished woman who has defied all odds in the technology and cybersecurity sector to discuss ways to mentor young girls to take up courses and interest in the technological world.
On her part, the Programmes Officer, Internet and Cybersecurity of the Economic Community of West African State (ECOWAS), Mrs Folake Olagunju, said even though there is gender inclusion in ECOWAS, but don’t have control on how things are institutionalise among member states and so called on women to break down institutional structures that prevent women from engaging in cybersecurity issues.
Mrs. Olagunju said there is the need to encourage governments, civil society and private sector to make conscious effort in getting women representation.
The Chief Executive Officer of Vodafone Ghana Limited, Mrs. Patricia Obo-Nai, said “I first got all my technological experience with a roadside mechanic.”
Mrs Obo-Nai said women should do away with excuses and bring out the competence in them and also after getting the role you need to move towards developing yourself to better understand your role and job.
The country Manager for Visa Ghana, Ms. Adoma Peprah, said Ghana’s story is different in terms of women in technology adding that South Africa where she used to work has 38% of their women into technology making them ahead of Ghana.
On her part, the Chief Executive of Byte The Bits, Ms Farida Bedwi added that one needs to prepare to do the work and shouldn’t approach it as a job but see it as a passion because for her it was more of a necessity considering her disability.