ICTA joins hands with
More opportunities for rural youth
many organisations have difficulties in recruiting the right talent to join
their winning teams, many applicants on the other hand, apply for vacancies not
being fully aware of the exact expectations of the organisation or the
competency requirements to fulfil the tasks assigned effectively.
Although the free education system was introduced in Sri Lanka over 5 decades
ago, it could be concluded that even with billions of Rupees of public funds
being allocated annually, our youth particularly its rural counterparts are yet
to show any remarkable improvement. It is no secret, how on a number of
occasions these youth who continuously suffered from a protracted ‘opportunity
divide’ reacted violently, whilst many passionately debated issues of the
Digital Divide on a global front.
With a vision ‘To empower the Sri Lankan youth to be globally competitive’, EDEX
along with the Information and Communication Technology Agency of Sri Lanka (ICTA)
is now concentrating on the rural youth of the country. This strategic
partnership paves the way for a better focused strategy to enhance opportunities
for the rural community.
ICTA’s Nenasala programme is now gaining momentum with over 400 IT kiosks
dotting even remote villages islandwide. This program is incrementally making
inroads to enhancing IT literacy, which is increasingly becoming a key skill in
demand. It is reported that over 10,000 mostly rural youth access Internet and
other IT resources online everyday via the Nenasala network.
Benefiting from the synergies the ‘Nenasala’ and ICTA offer, EDEX – National
Higher Education and Careers EXPO has decided to offer the benefits of the
recently re-launched EDEX web portal www.edex.lk for the benefit of these rural
Synergies derived from this initiative are expected to be a real boon to the
aspiring youth in the country specially those in rural areas. Bringing these
rural youth a few steps closer to the opportunities that exist both within and
outside the country, the EDEX web portal will offer them with invaluable online
resources in higher education, skills development and employment in terms of
guidance as well as placements.
Such rare exposure and access to related information will enable the out-of
school young men and women to make informed decisions on choices, options and
EDEX is acclaimed to be the most comprehensive and the largest Education &
Careers Fair in the country. It has managed to create new standards in the
exhibitions arena with its novelty/ value addition programmes such as seminars &
workshops, on site job interviews, scholarship offers, greater coverage of
relevant sectors representing both local and overseas participants and other
special features, the pinnacle of which are the twin EDEX Exhibitions held in
Colombo and Kandy in January each year.
ValueFirst introduces global SMS platform to
ValueFirst Lanka, a member of the ValueFirst Group headquartered
in India, with a presence in over 8 countries including Nigeria, Pakistan,
Romania, Russia, the UK, the Middle East, Lebanon, and the Caribbean Islands,
will make its debut shortly as the first ever independent Mobile Virtual Network
Operator [ MVNO ] in Sri Lanka.
Vice President, Global Alliances ValueFirst, Srinand Sridharan, said that their
objective for Sri Lanka was to create an independent MVNO, with a focus on
enterprise mobile messaging with unique and superior offerings for mission
critical, corporate applications.
“Value First is a leading MVNO with a clear focus on SMS mobile messaging for
enterprises. It empowers its customers to communicate between varied IT back-end
systems and mobile phones, using SMS services”, said Sridharan. He went on to
say that ValueFirst provides a unique, end to end, global carrier grade mobile
data service offering ‘ plug and play’ application and hosting.
“Sri Lanka has over 6 million mobile phone users out of a 20 million population,
and is growing at a rate of over 25% . With a cellular density of over 21%, Sri
Lanka is poised for accelerated growth in this value added space”.
Sridharan went on to say that ValueFirst’s platform combines signaling
information from the mobile world with an innovative IT application layer to
provide messaging services to corporate customers, with guaranteed service
“Over the last 20 years mobile telephony has made tremendous progress in moving
from the introduction of the in-car analogue mobile phone for businessmen, to
today’s mass retail market in pocket sized digital handsets”. Sridharan went on
to say that mobile phone penetration now exceeded 90% of the population in the
more advanced European countries and in addition, there are more than half a
billion digital GSM handsets in use across 210 countries. “As the public becomes
more familiar with mobile telephony, the use of Short Mesage Services [ SMS ],
has rapidly become a cult service transforming the way in which people
Value First Lanka would provide solutions to Corporate customers through a new
type of messaging infrastructure. ValueFirst’s Mobile Messaging platform with
direct access to mobile operator networks include quality features such as
Reliability and Timelessness, a Secure and Trusted Environment, Single Entry
Point, and Uniform Application Access.
As one of the fastest growing wireless application and service providers in
India, ValueFirst’s technologies and applications have been extensively tested
in customer applications. The ValueFirst Technology Development Centre in
Gurgaon , India possesses state of the art knowledge and extensive experience in
building proven customer applications and messaging interfaces.
“With several Fortune 500 listed companies as our customers around the globe,
including Pepsi, eBay, Phillip Morris, Microsoft, Yahoo, Proctor & Gamble,
Colgate Palmolive, HP, TATA, Aviva, Cadbury, and many others, ValueFirst Lanka
looks forward to expanding our business into the under serviced market of
enterprise mobile messaging with superior levels” said Mr Sridharan.
Dialog Change Trust Fund fosters digital
Donates computer peripherals to St. Sebastians
The Dialog Telekom Change Trust Fund recently donated computers
and peripherals to St. Sebastian’s Tamil Maha Vidyalaya, Colombo 12. Prior to
the intervention from Dialog, there was only one computer available in the
school. Although Computer Studies is part of the syllabus for Grade 5 and above,
hands-on experience for students was restricted due to this shortage. The school
needed to minimise drop outs and help students cope with the rapidly changing
world by allowing them to gain exposure in the field of Information
It was under these circumstances that the Change Trust Fund stepped in, Mr.
Mothilal De Silva, Group Chief Corporate Officer, Dialog Telekom explains, “We
acknowledge that being a company operating in the global south, Dialog Telekom
has an important role to play in the development of the country in addition to
providing high value products & services. Our Corporate Responsibility
encompasses community outreach and the Change Trust Fund has given hope to many
causes through charitable contributions to the needy”.
The Change Trust Fund was established in 1999 by Dialog Telekom and is the
company’s key community service initiative, winning awards at international
level including the prestigious World GSM Awards. Under the voluntary agreement,
subscribers donate half a percent (0.5%) of their Dialog GSM bill up to a
maximum of Rs.25/= to the fund, which is matched 1 to 1 by the network.
Initiatives under the fund focus on needs-based community projects with the
ultimate aim of enriching Sri Lankan lives through inclusion. Web:
Mobitel provides value addition to Ceylinco
Mobitel, the national mobile services provider has signed an
agreement with Ceylinco Savings Bank in order to provide total mobile solutions
for their corporate staff as well as their freelance and periphery sales force.
Suren J Amarasekera, CEO of Sri Lanka Telecom Mobitel said: “It gives us immense
pleasure to have had the opportunity to propose to Ceylinco Savings Bank a
tailored proposal addressing the unique requirements they had. With the award of
this proposal, we want to reciprocate the trust that they had reposed in us and
give them the very best service.”
Adding to this Reyaz Jeffrey, CEO, Ceylinco Savings Bank said: “We had a
requirement to reducing our overall voice cost and we felt that we were reaching
a level where it was difficult to control. We decided the best thing was to
switch on to a mobile network to provide our sales force contactability at a
reduced cost, and along with that we realised that the corporate theme also
required a certain amount of synergy. There was quite a lot that we could reap
out of having one common package. Mobitel gave us an excellent deal in terms of
our bank and of what we were looking for. We have achieved our objective above
Sri Lanka Telecom Mobitel is a wholly owned subsidiary of Sri Lanka Telecom. In
January 2004, the company launched its fully-fledged GSM network that is EDGE/GPRS
enabled and designed to operate on dual bands. Investments committed to date in
its 3G and GSM service offer a total of over US$ 200 mn. This is set to increase
its present 600 base stations by the end of this year.
National Best quality Software Awards 2007
Sanjitha De Silva Alwis, a recipient of double gold award for
the tertiary student project and the Microsoft award for the best project
developed using Microsoft tools at the National Best quality Software Awards
2007 and Erani Srikantha who was a recipient of the Silver with the awards.
The group that won the Gold for the tertiary student project and the Microsoft
award are Sanjitha De Silva, Sukitha Magallage, Mohamed Hosney, Nishadha Silva
and Wimal Perera. Winners of the Silver were Erani Srikantha, Rakitha
Karunaratne, Chamara Nandasena, Gihantha Ratnayake and Garuka Serasinghe.
Both Gold and Silver winners represented SLIIT. These groups will be
representing Sri Lanka at the regional competition (APICTA) which will be held
in Singapore late November. The National Best quality software Awards were
organized by the British Computer society (Sri Lanka section)