ICT Stakeholders committed to enhance digitalization

By ABCafrica reporter

Prime Minister Ruhakana Rugunda has lauded the ICT Ministry for formulating an integrated government digital policy. He said that implementation of the policy will ease coordination and monitoring of all government agencies and what they are doing. Premier Rugunda said this last Thursday, while officiating at a consultative workshop; for ICT stakeholders held at Kampala Sheraton Hotel.

The forum; organized by the Ministry of ICT and National Guidance sought to engage ICT players across the spectrum; on how to enrich the policy for better regulation, data management, infrastructure, protection of startups and privacy. The ICT stakeholders’ forum was among others intended to; enhance in-house ICT digitalization and seek views from stakeholders in the ICT Sector, so as to help shape a common country ICT Vision.

 “For all this to be clear, policy instruments discussed and bought-in by all stakeholders have to be put in place so as to create an enabling environment”, said the Minister of ICT and National Guidance Frank Tumwebaze.

He said the ICT sector for example, has Sector strategic Investment Plan (SIIP); guiding all the interventions of the ministry, as well as the agencies. “Different Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) have their own in-house ICT strategies and have invested heavily to build electronic systems. I take the opportunity to congratulate all those government agencies that have put ICT as a priority in their work plans. It is also true that many government services in the field of e-commerce can now be assessed online”, he added.

He in addition said; Government concluded the procurement of Bulk Internet Bandwidth for MDAs/LGs, which shall lead to a reduction in the cost of Internet Bandwidth. “Effective 1st July 2017, the cost shall reduce from USD 300 to USD 190 per megabits per second per month for all Government MDAs, LGs and target user groups such as hospitals, research institutions, Business Process Outsourcing agencies and innovation hubs. Even then, we want this cost to go down further and also go down in tandem with what the private operators are charging. Government Intervention is done cautiously so as not to squeeze the licensed telecom operators out of business. The engagement we shall be continuing to have with licensed operators will harmonize all this”, he pointed out.

The consultative meeting was attended by representatives from; Uganda Communications Commission {UCC}, NITA-Uganda, Posta, Uganda Broadcasting Corporation {UBC}, Telecom Companies and members of ICT Association of Uganda among others.

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