Positive Youth’s Africa(PYA) joined an array of activists, community developers, entrepreneurs, journalists and students to discuss digital citizenship in Africa.
During this event which was hosted by the University of Lagos,Nigeria from the 25th to the 27th of July, 2017,we learnt that digital citizenship is the term used to describe the norms of responsible and appropriate behavior with regards to technology.
Nigeria’s Minister of Communication, Barrister Abdur-Raheem Adebayo Shittu who chaired the event expressed hope that it would help enhance digital literacy which he defined as the ability to understand and use information in multiple formats from a wide range of sources when it is presented via computers.
Mr.Sola Fakorede, the Chief Convener of the gathering informed that this event was meant to address the issue of digital etiquette by hammering on the need for responsible and safe usage of the internet. He then informed that the event equally aimed to raise awareness and support on digital citizenship, develop a common language or vision for digital citizenship and mobilize all youths to partake in meaningful discussions for positive digital change.
Asked why Nigeria was chosen to host such an event which is the first of it’s kind in Africa, the CEO of the Digital Citizenship Institute ,Dr. Marialice Curran said that Nigeria was chosen as a starting point because she has registered many cases of digital indiscipline and it is easier to reach a greater proportion of Africans when Nigeria, being the most populated country is used as starting point. She informed that plans are being made to organize the summit in other African countries and that Kenya would host the next summit in Africa, come October this year.
Equally in attendance, a Lecturer in the USA, Dr.Mike Ribble said digital citizenship is very relevant to the African continent as it would enable the people express and share their creativity to the rest of the world. Dr.Ribble expressed hope that this event would help breach the digital divide between Africa and the rest of the world. A major challenge, he noted is that Africans may have enough access to internet but not enough access to the knowledge of what needs to be done and how it needs to be done.
At the end of the summit, Positive Youth’s Africa and other institutions were trained on the nine tenets of Digital Citizenship namely; digital access, digital commerce, digital communication, digital literacy, digital etiquette, digital law, digital rights and responsibilities, digital health and digital security.
We all pledged to optimize the knowledge gained and create a new generation of digital users.by