Ministry of Education Endorses ABU as IIOE National Centre

Federal Ministry of Education Edorses ABU as IIOE National Centre

The Federal Ministry of Education has approved the sitting of the International Institute of Online Education (IIOE) Nigeria National Centre at Ahmadu Bello University as part of the UNESCO International Centre for Higher Education Innovation (UNESCO-ICHEI) requirement.

In a recent letter to the Vice-Chancellor of Ahmadu Bello University, the Director of University Education at the Federal Ministry of Education, Mrs. R.G. Iliyasu, stated that the Minister of Education had given his approval.

On April 20, 2022, the Nigeria National Centre of the International Institute of Online Education (IIOE) was successfully opened digitally at Ahmadu Bello University in Zaria.

The event was jointly put together by UNESCO-ICHEI, UNESCO Priority Africa and External Relations Sector, UNESCO Regional Office in Abuja, Federal Ministry of Education, National Universities Commission (NUC), and Ahmadu Bello University.

The Centre is expected to leverage the networks and resources of IIOE, bridge UNESCO-ICHEI and the higher education community in Nigeria, and create supportive local higher education ecosystem that would contribute to the realization of Nigeria’s national development strategies.

The successful launch of the Centre would contribute to the digital transformation of higher education in Nigeria and in West Africa.

And with the joint efforts of IIOE and its partners, IIOE Nigeria National Centre would play an important role in filling the digital divide in the global south and in achieving SDG4.

Speaking at the ceremony, the Director, UNESCO-ICHEI, Prof. Li Ming, said UNESCO-ICHEI was committed to supporting Nigeria on the journey of higher education digital transformation.

Prof. Ming was confident that the IIOE Nigeria National Centre would fulfil its mission to bridge UNESCO-ICHEI and Nigeria’s higher education community.

The Vice-Chancellor, Ahmadu Bello University, Prof. Kabiru Bala, who was represented by the Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Administration, Prof. Ahmed Doko Ibrahim, was of the belief that the facilities provided by UNESCO for the project would make work better and be accessed by all other universities in Nigeria.

Representatives of the Federal Ministry of Education, National Universities Commission (NUC), University of Lagos and other key stakeholders spoke at the one-day event.

High points of the event were presentations on the IIOE Nigeria National Centre Implementation Framework and Work Plan by the Programme Officer, UNESCO-ICHEI, Ms. Qiao Shi and the Head, Department of Computer Engineering, Ahmadu Bello University, Prof. M.B. Mu’azu.

The International Institute of Online Education (IIOE) was launched by UNESCO-ICHEI in conjunction with African and Asian HEIs and private sector partners in December 2019. And it was endorsed by UNESCO.

Since its establishment, IIOE provided a multilingual online education platform, teacher capacity building programmes in Big Data, Artificial Intelligence, online and blended pedagogy, and STEM online courses.

This is in addition to developing IIOE Quality Assurance Framework and Toolkit for Online and Blended Teaching and Learning, as well as the IIOE Competency Framework for the Higher Education Workforce.

Ahmadu Bello University as IIOE’s founding member and UNESCO-ICHEI have had substantial cooperation in ICT capacity building, digital infrastructure, academic exchange, and joint research since 2019.