23 April 2019

Uganda: Govt Endorses Mobile-Enabled Digital Transformation

The ministry of ICT and National Guidance along with its partners have committed to pursue a mobile-enabled digital transformation in a quest to foster economic development in Uganda. The commitment was made at the Uganda national dialogue for digital transformation roundtable held at the Kampala Sheraton hotel recently.

Deputy premier Gen Moses Ali presided over the roundtable with support from various developmental partners .

According to Almaz Gebru, the resident representative, United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), in a predominantly agricultural country like Uganda, mobile innovations will be an incredibly transformative tool, providing opportunities to solve several development challenges as in the sustainable development goals.

"For instance, we need to harness the power of mobile to reduce reliance of farmers on the ancient knowledge passed on by the ancestors because in a connected society, modern farming should outdate traditional methods by connecting farmers to innovative farming technologies and high-end markets to beef up their earnings," Gebru said

Speaking on behalf of the minister of ICT Frank Tumwebaze ,the permanent secretary of the ministry emphasized that there was a deliberate national programme to prepare the country for the fourth industrial revolution and a national taskforce had been set up to ensure that new technologies were harnessed to improve Uganda's economy .

Meanwhile, ICT ministry permanent secretary, Vincent Bagiire, noted that the taskforce will ensure that artificial intelligence, big data, name it all, will be made useful to our economies and that he was confident all that will be driven by mobile technology.

Kenechi Okeleke, a lead data analyst with GSMA, an international data provider for MTN and other leading mobile networks, said it is going to take collaborative effort from various sectors for the digital transformation to become effectively possible.

"A local example is where banks are now positioning themselves strategically and some are linking their services directly to mobile money, making the cashless transition smooth," Okeleke added.

Organizers expect this platform to influence Ugandans to promote digital transformation through mobile.

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