By APCNews JOHANNESBURG, 28 May 2009
The APC Africa ICT Policy Monitor website was launched in late 2001 with a goal to provide information to African civil society organisations to fruitfully engage in information and communications technology (ICT) policy advocacy in Africa. At that time the idea of ICT policy advocacy was a relatively new one in many countries on the continent, and we wanted governments and policy-makers to recognise that access to and the use of ICTs is a basic human right.
Over the past seven years of its operation, the Africa ICT Policy Monitor became a substantial database of ICTs news, events, and analyses of trends and shifts in policy development. And APC, together with our partners, has made significant inroads into raising the profile of the need for progressive ICT policy approaches in Africa. Countries now see the ICT policy development process as critical to both economic development and the social well-being of its citizens.
Yet the landscape has also shifted with this growing awareness, and the need for a portal like the Africa ICT Policy Monitor that collects and organises news and resources on such a vast array of issues has diminished. Because of this, as well as due to the lack of ongoing funding needed to drive information projects like the monitor, the APC policy team has taken the decision to close down the monitor in June.
Chakula – periodic newsletter will continue to raise strategic issues
Nevertheless, the need for focused information advocacy on ICT policy in Africa remains. Because of this, one of the monitor’s flagship initiatives, the Chakula newsletter, will continue. Chakula (which means “food” in Swahili) has at times been a brave voice in ICT policy advocacy in Africa, and will be compiled based on the strategic need to raise issues around policy on the continent. It will be published 3-4 times a year in English with occasional articles in French. You can subscribe to Chakula free of charge.
Thank you for helping us shape the ICT policy landscape in Africa!