DOVER, Del., Nov. 27 (UPI) -- Efforts by Americans to distribute laptops to children in developing nations are foundering amid a lack of "big thinking" by politicians.
Walter Bender of One Laptop per Child said politicians were unwilling to commit to the program because "change equals risk."
"You've got to be big; you've got to be bold.," Bender said. "And what has happened is that there has been an effort to say 'don't take any risks -- just do something small, something incremental'."
One of those officials who question the program is Nigeria Education Minister Igwe Aja-Nwachuku, BBC reported Tuesday.
"What is the essence of introducing One Laptop per Child when they don't have seats to sit down and learn; when they don't have uniforms to go to school in, where they don't have facilities?" he asked. "We are more interested in laying a very solid foundation for quality education which will be efficient, effective, accessible and affordable."
Although the previous government of Nigeria had committed to buying 1 million laptops, Aja-Nwachuku said he was reassessing that decision, comparing the One Laptop program to programs offered by Microsoft Corp. and Intel Corp.
OLPC, started in 2002 by Massachusetts Institute of Technology Professor Nicholas Negroponte, aims to provide low-cost laptops, known as the XO, to children in poor countries.