Rwanda Focus (Kigali)

Rwandans to Manage .rw Domain

The Rwanda Information Communication and Technology Association (RICTA) yesterday announced that the country's code top-level domain .rw will be run by the government.

The country code top level domain ccTLD, which is used and reserved for a country or sovereign state, for Rwanda was created around 1996 and was managed by a Swiss citizen named Frédéric Grégoire since its creation. He was managing it along with the country domains for DRC, Congo Brazzaville and Burundi.

Geoffrey Kayonga, the CEO of RICTA, said, "Now that the domain is managed by Rwandans, it will be done more efficiently."

The switch from Grégoire to the government was made last week by the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) nine months after the request was brought before the corporation in January.

"We plan to have affordable prices as well as faster services," said Ghislain Nkeramugaba, the coordinator of RICTA, adding that although registering to the domain will no longer be free, their prices will be reasonable and competitive while the time of registration will also be less (six hours).

Given the fact that people used to register for free and the widespread use of international domain such as .com, RICTA is planning to start a campaign to raise people's awareness to the advantages of using the national domain.

"Besides the accompanying pride of having a Rwandan domain, it will also facilitate the creation of local content which will speed their search on internet," explained Nkeramugaba, adding that efforts will be put in changing people's perceptions about using the national domain.

The process to ask the management of the domain by Rwanda was supported by different government and private bodies like RURA, RDB and JICA among others.

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