Sunday, 15 March 2009

ICT Recommendations for Namibia

"First posted 4 May 2007"

Hi, Milton here in Windhoek. Sitting in the office on a public holiday getting some work done!

Last week I was questioned on the achievements of the ICT Alliance, so I thought to give a short overview of the recommendations recently accepted by the Government of Namibia in the area of Information and Communication Technology. The conference report details the areas Namibia will have to concentrate on if we wish to make ICT a pillar of our Vision 2030 and was developed in partnership between the Ministry and the ICT Alliance.

My thought for this week - specifically with our neighbouring Zimbabwe in mind:

"Him that I love, I wish to be free -- even from me." - Anne Lindbergh


Kind regards

Milton Louw
+ 264 81 3043282
milton@iit.com.na

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The previous Ministry of Information and Broadcasting (now Ministry of Information and Communication Technology - MICT) held a conference in August 2007 on the role of ICT in Namibia. The conference was organised together with the Namibia Communication Commission and the ICT Alliance.


The main objectives of this Conference were as follows:

o To assess the current reality of Information Communication Technology (ICT) in Namibia
o To identify the challenges and opportunities for ICT in the country
o To propose ways in which ICT can contribute to poverty alleviation and sustainable development in Namibia
o And ultimately, to identify how ICT can assist Namibia in achieving its Vision 2030.

The key expectation of the Namibian Minister of Information and Broadcasting for the Conference was to generate practical recommendations assisting Government in preparing a roadmap to accelerate economic development and prosperity for all through the use of ICT.

The conference had two parts, the first dealing with the present status of the industry, and the second dealing with recommendations for future action on the part of the country.

A report was submitted to the Cabinet of Namibia and they have accepted the recommendations and established a Taskforce, under the leadership of the Permanent Secretary of the MICT, with the chairpersons of the various conference sub-groups.

The sub-groups are:
o Government (Chair: Mr. Samuel Goagoseb)
o Legal framework (Mr. Hartmut Ruppel)
o Education (Mr. Alfred Ilukena represented by Mr. Johan van Wyk)
o Telecommunications and Broadcasting (Chair: Mr. Jochen Traut)
o Internet (Chair: Mr. Gideon Nhundu)
o ICT Industry (Chair: Mr. Theo Schoeman)

These are the broad outlines of the recommendations proposed during the Conference and accepted by the Government of Namibia as areas of activity.
" Consolidation of overall ICT governance
" Free / Libre Open Source Software policy must be adopted
" Copyright legislation must be amended to include Creative Commons licensing
" Development of Broadband access (infrastructure) be accelerated
" Separate infrastructure ownership and usage
" Universal Service Fund must be clearly defined and administered
" Local companies must get preference in tenders
" E-commerce (electronic transactions) law must be passed
" Privacy and data protection must be addressed
" Top-level domain administration must be administered better
" Broadcasting policy must be created
" Investigate Tax incentives for ICT skills development

The taskforce is meeting regularly and will submit a report to Cabinet on the activities to be undertaken as well as budgetary outlines.

If you wish to have a copy of the report, please send an email to milton@iit.com.na. If you wish to peruse any of the presentations given at the conference, they can be found at http://www.ictalliance.org.na/ictnam.

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