UGANDA SETS UP ONE THOUSAND ICT LABS:MARKS INTERNATIONAL DAY FOR GIRLS AND WOMEN IN ICT

Uganda has set up over one thousand  Information  Communications Technology  (ICT)laboratories s  in rural schools,  tertiary institutions, and universities to counter the challenges of accessing modern communications technologies by women and girls in the countryside,  Minister of ICT, and NG, Ms. Judith Nabakooba has said.

In a statement she made to mark the International Day for Girls and Women in ICT,  Nabakooba said that her Ministry working together with the Uganda Communications Commission, (UCC), is implementing the Rural Communications Development  Fund (RCDF) to ensure that the challenged communities especially those in the rural communities, women, and girls have access to  IC technologies.

Further, still, the ICT Ministry is also implementing an innovation program called the  National ICT Initiative Support Program (NIISP) with the aim of providing systematic and sustainable support to ICT innovators.  “ Under the NIISP, we are finalizing the construction and equipping of an Innovation Hub which is going to provide space for the youth and other ICT innovators to develop knowledge products,”  Nabakooba stated.

The Innovation Hub with the capacity to seat 500 people is located at  UICT in Nakawa. UICT is the only government institution specializing in skills-based middle-level ICT training.   The Minister underscored the critical importance of ICTs in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic noting that with the ongoing guidance on social distancing and keep at home, ICTs have become the main avenue through which people can continue to carry on with their lives.

Nabakooba explained that the government is utilizing key ICTs in all major Covid-19 responses such as surveillance of incoming long-distance truckers, public awareness and health education, provision of vital health service, and coordinating relief activities.

“ With over 300 radio stations and 39 television stations plus a number of online registered channels, Uganda is well placed to ensure that majority of people especially women and girls do not miss out on the opportunities that come with ICTs,” she emphasized.

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