Nigeria engages Microsoft for language preservation, AI, digital innovations ─Official

*The President says democratising access to digital tools and skills is a core agenda of the Federal Government with a goal to goal is to train five million Nigerians for a knowledge-based economy

Isola Moses | ConsumerConnect

In a move to attain democratisation of access to digital tools and skills in the country, the Nigerian Presidency has disclosed it is currently engaging with Microsoft, a global tech giant towards the application of machine learning and Artificial Intelligence (AI) to preserve indigenous languages.

Mr. Ife Adebayo, Special Assistant to President Muhammadu Buhari on Innovations, in a statement Friday, May 7 in Abuja, FCT, noted that democratising access to digital tools and digital skills is a core agenda of the Federal Government.

The statement said that the presidential aide recently had interactions with Nigerians on what the current administration was doing to further encourage Information and Communications Technology (ICT) startup innovations and other aspects of technology.

“So, what you find is that since 2016, the Vice-President has engaged with various technology leaders within the country and outside the country.

“Microsoft is one of them; and in January, he met with Microsoft again and spoke on the need to invest in Nigerians because Nigeria’s biggest resource is human capital,” Adebayo said.

The statement further noted: “So, after various conversations with Microsoft, there were investments that were announced by the Vice-President and the Microsoft President.”

According to him, the goal is to train five million Nigerians across the country.

Adedayo stressed “this is going to be democratised and there would be a lot of focus on under-served areas. However everybody will have their opportunity.

“There is also the engagement with Microsoft to be able to use machine learning and artificial intelligence to preserve Nigeria languages starting with of course, Yoruba, Hausa and Igbo. So we are working with the Institute of Cultural Orientation.’’

In the arrangement, he stated, Nigerian languages would be localised in Microsoft products.

The way one can use Microsoft Word and choose German, Spanish and English, one will also be able to choose Yoruba, Hausa and Igbo.

He added: “Software developers who are building using Microsoft platforms would be able to build in their languages.

Kindly Share This Story