By Christine Muchira
The Cabinet Secretary for Information, Communications and Technology (ICT) Joe Mucheru Wednesday announced that the country will have in place a new ICT policy in the next 30 days.
Mucheru said the Draft Bill which is being review by stakeholders in the ICT sector at the moment will be tabled before the Cabinet for discussion in the next 14 days before it is subjected to implementation.
Addressing an ICT stakeholders’ workshop on the Review of the National ICT Policy Draft at a Nairobi hotel Wednesday, Mucheru urged participants to come up with a comprehensive policy document that will not only guide the ICT sector to fully realize the benefits of utilizing ICT but also stand the challenges and rapid changes in the sector.
He said the priority areas will include having more companies enlisted in the security exchange, create employment, allow the public to share wealth in the companies and provide appropriate information to ICT investors who want to invest in the country to enhance enormous contributions towards economic development of the country.
“We should have electronic walls in the boundaries using the throngs and ways of looking at our policy on how we are going to have the best talent for providing digital work and other services to the world from our market,” said Mucheru.
The CS further noted that the policy will play a significant role on how to manage the market and overcome challenges in the ICT sector.
He said although the ICT market has grown from 20 billion to approximately 200 billion there is need to expand it further to ensure that it contributes 10 percent to the country’s Gross Domestic Product.
“ICT is rapidly emerging as a major contributor of the economy in the country as individuals and enterprises adopt and utilize innovative technology solutions to provide goods and services,” he added.
Rwanda Minister of ICT and Youth Jean Nsengimana said the East African region has plans of working together to share development of ICT infrastructure and policy developments.
Nsengimana said ICT has enabled the flow of data, goods and services in the cross regional boundaries, which he noted played a crucial role in actualizing the vision of regional integration.
“The private sector plays a key role in economic growth of the region and therefore it is important for the public sector to develop vibrant policies that will facilitate private investments in industries such as the ICT sector among others,” added Nsengimana.
Among those who attended the workshop were the Chief Executive Officer of Smart Africa Company Dr. Hamadoun Toure, Regional Director for International Telecommunications Union (ITU) Africa office, Andrew Rugege and the Director General for Communications Authority of Kenya Francis Wangusi.