Partnership formalised for establishment of IT centre

Attorney-General Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum with Fiji National University (FNU) Vice Chancellor Professor Nigel Healey, High Commissioner of India to Fiji Vishvas Sapkal with reps from C-DAC and FNU at Nasinu Campus. Picture: SUPPLIED

A PARTNERSHIP between a local university and the Indian Government has been formalised which will see the establishment of the India-Fiji Centre of Excellence in Information Technology (CEIT).

The Fiji National University (FNU) inked the pact with the Centre for Development of Advanced Computing (C-DAC) at Nasinu Campus.

The partnership sets out the operational requirements for the new CEIT to be set-up at FNU’s College of Engineering, Science and Technology (CEST), Derrick Campus in Samabula.

The partnerships stems from a memorandum of understanding which was signed last year by the Fijian and Indian governments for the establishment of the centre.

The MOU was signed by Attorney-General Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum and the Indian Minister of State for External Affairs, General (Ret’d) Vijay Kumar Singh.

FNU Vice Chancellor Professor Nigel Healey said as Fiji’s national university, the university was delighted to be partnering with C-DAC. The CEIT project is supported by the Government of India and the Fijian Government.

Professor Healey said this new partnership comes hard on the heels of a major leap forward by FNU in its digital capability.

“Under this partnership between C-DAC and FNU, the Government of India will be funding the equipment for computer laboratories at the new India-Fiji National Centre of Excellence in IT, which will be housed in dedicated facilities in A Block at Derrick Campus,” said Professor Healey.

“C-DAC will provide blocks of intensive six-months training, at one of the C-DAC teaching centres in India, for six FNU IT staff, to allow them to upgrade their skills and qualifications and teach in the new CEIT. This training will be fully funded by the Government of India, including tuition, flights and accommodation.”

C-DAC will also base its own experts at FNU for extended periods of secondment, to help launch the India-Fiji CEIT and develop a suite of IT training programmes.

The new India-Fiji CEIT will be the next stage in the exciting journey of connecting Fiji to the world and making FNU a full player in the digital academic community.

Professor Healey acknowledged the Government of India for being given the opportunity of working with C-DAC.

He also thanked the Fijian Government for supporting a number of digital connectivity projects being undertaken by FNU.

Meanwhile, High Commissioner of India to Fiji Vishvas Sapkal acknowledged FNU for providing the facility to establish the new centre.

Mr Sapkal said after the completion of this project, the facility will become the hub for telemedicine and tele-education.

“Once CEIT is established, it will act as a hub to connect the best of the hospital from India just through the click of the mouse. Best universities throughout the world will be connected with this tele-education hub.”

Minister for Economy and Attorney General Aiyaz Saiyed-Khaiyum briefly met VC Healey, HE Sapkal and the team from the Centre for Development of Advanced Computing (C-DAC) at Nasinu Campus this afternoon.


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