Africa

Internet Governance and Information Society: Developing an African Strategy - An agenda for African MPs

By Anriette Esterhuysen (November 2009, APC )

Presentation on internet governance, information society and developing a strategy for African MPs. The presentation looks at current processes an institutions, how MPs can approach Internet governance and finally suggests some activities for MPs.

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Rwanda’s policy vacuum could mean trouble for broadband

JOHANNESBURG 29 October 2009 (Emmanuel Habumuremyi and Alan Finlay for APCNews)

The imminent arrival of broadband in Rwanda has exposed a policy vacuum that desperately needs to be filled if the poor in the country are going to benefit from the information society. Having good plans is not enough, argue Emmanuel Habumuremyi and Alan Finlay.

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Google Earth outreach offering East Africa workshops

Montevideo

News has come through that Google Earth Outreach is organising a series of capacity building events in Kampala and Nairobi.

It’s not enough to have a pushy broadband policy in Tanzania

TANZANIA 13 October 2009 (John Mireny for APCNews)

By most standards, Tanzania’s information and communications technology (ICT) policy looks ambitious. In just six years, it wants to make the country a hub of telecommunications infrastructure to help build the economy and end poverty. But John Mireny argues that when it comes to broadband, this vision lacks practical application, and is out of step with the real limitations on the ground….

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Internet blackout in Niger: Niger’s dependence on the damaged Beninese fibre optic cable

CALGARY 13 October 2009 (LC for APCNews)

For twenty days in July, land-locked Niger was without internet connection owing to damage to the undersea cable which goes through neighbouring Benin, and on which Niger depends for 70% of its bandwidth. This APC investigation seeks to understand why this West African country is almost exclusively reliant on Beninese infrastructures, when an alternative satellite solution could have minimised the severity of the situation.

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The East African Internet Governance Forum: Advancing the internet governance debate for meaningful participation

NAIROBI 13 October 2009 (Alice Munyua for KICANet)

The East Africa Internet Governance Forum (EA-IGF), which first convened in 2008, aims at creating a community of practice that will, in the long term, become a sustaining foundation for meaningful participation of East African stakeholders in internet public policy debates at the national, regional and international level. This year’s EA-IGF was held in Nairobi Kenya, with over 200 participants from varying sectors, from fifteen different countries. This year’s forum focused on cyber-crime, policy regulatory needs consumer issues, critical internet resources, and access to broadband.

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ICTs for democracy: Information and Communication Technologies for the Enhancement of Democracy - with a Focus on Empowerment

By APC (October 2009, Swedish International Development Agency )

The democratisation process is often uneven and rocky as the power dynamic shifts between governments and their respective constituencies. In practically all cases, however, governments hostile to citizens’ civil and political rights have both the resources and the power to withhold these rights. It is therefore imperative that support be channeled to governments to deepen their awareness of citizens’ rights and the processes needed to ensure they have access to these rights. Equally important is support to civil society groups so that they can demand their civil and political as well as economic, social and cultural rights from their governments. There is ample evidence of the importance of “demand side” approaches for ensuring the longevity of a human rights culture. In the cases of young and emerging democracies, it is essential that institutions, processes and mechanisms be installed to support and underscore national efforts to strengthen democracies. This study by the APC and the Swedish International Development agency explores the potential information and communication technologies (ICTs) have for advancing democracy and empowerment, with a special focus on Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda.

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Amy Mahan Research Fellowship Program to Assess the Impact of Public Access to ICTs

Montevideo

Dear Colleagues,

We are pleased to announce the launch of the Amy Mahan Research Fellowship Program to Assess the Impact of Public Access to ICTs.

Kenya: Killing two birds with one stone

JOHANNESBURG 24 September 2009 (Rebecca Wanjiku and Alan Finlay for APCNews)

On 12 December last year – Kenya’s 44th independence-day celebrations – journalists, media owners and civil society activists took to the streets in Nairobi. They were protesting the publication of Kenya’s Communications Amendment Bill (2007) which was later passed into law. But the media protests overshadowed a more complex challenge that lies at the heart of policy convergence in a networked world, write Rebecca Wanjiku and Alan Finlay…

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