Limpopo Connexion, a subsidiary company of Limpopo Economic Development Agency (Leda), hosted a Free and Open Source Software (Foss) Day at Bolivia Lodge on Friday. The purpose of the event was to empower youth, provide SMMEs with knowledge to use Foss to build sustainable businesses, to establish a Foss community support group and to lower information and communication technology costs.
FOSS provides offline content to schools without internet connectivity and is a collaboration between Limpopo Department of Economic Development, Environment and Tourism (Ledet), Limpopo Department of Education and Suse, a leading Germany based open source software company. It is funded by Belgian Government through Department of Public Service and Administration’s Tirelo Bosha Public Service Improvement Facility.
Ledet MEC Seaparo Sekoati, Leda Chief Executive Officer Ben Mphahlele and Limpopo Connexion acting Chief Executive Officer, Baldwin Ramasobane were among the dignitaries present. Delivering the key note address, Sekoati said the project contributes to improved learning outcomes, increased exposure to technology in schools, promoting and enhancing teaching, learning and school classroom management and promoting inclusive information society initiatives.
“It provides access to additional teaching and learning material and content like previous exam papers and study guides and most importantly research for assignments,” Sekoati said.
Limpopo Connexion acting Chief Executive Officer, Baldwin Ramasobane, said that Limpopo Connexion is pleased to be working with Department of Public Service and Administration (DPSA), Department of Science and Technology (DST) and Department of Telecommunications and Postal Services (DTPS) and provincial entities in the implementation of Foss in Limpopo.
“Considerable work has been done and continues to be done in creating awareness around the cost effectiveness and developmental merits of Foss, especially in largely rural and undeveloped areas, insofar as limited access to and technical know-how of technology and computing,” Ramasobane said, adding that Limpopo Connexion is confident that large scale utilisation of Foss is a step in the right direction in tackling the digital divide and empowering individuals and institutions.
Story & photos: BARRY VILJOEN