Members of ECOWAS Parliament have been charged to develop in their respective countries, a Digital Master Plan that will drive the switch to ICT-based distance learning in all parts of the sub-region, including rural areas.
This is also as members were encouraged to set up a fund that will help make the move more seamless.
The advice was given during the technical session at the ongoing Joint Delocalized Meeting of the ECOWAS Parliament in Lomé, Republic of Togo.
Although members agreed that the region could not wait any longer to effect a full switch to distance learning to forestall any future disruption to education occasioned by a pandemic, they agreed that there were grave challenges that would hamper the process.
Top on the list of the challenges identified were: low internet penetration, high cost of internet provision and data purchase, high cost of computers and other gadgets, inadequate energy provision to power the infrastructure, and many more.
The move by Parliament according to Speaker Sidie Mohamed Tunis, is to forestall a situation where another inequality in education will arise in the region due to lack of infrastructure to drive e-learning for all in the region.
At the end of the 6-day meeting, Parliament is expected to make recommendations on how to implement e-learning/distance learning in the sub region with the use of ICT and in a way that no one is left behind.