The pioneering efforts of Dr Jimson Olufuye and a few other African InfoTech professionals at establishing AfICTA in 2012 received standing ovation when he handed chairmanship of the Association to Engr. Hossam Elgamal of the Arab Republic of Egypt early this week in Nairobi.
Jimson Olufuye and Hossam Elgamal
AfICTA, Africa Information & Communication Technologies Alliance, is a concerned private sector led alliance of ICT Associations, multi-national corporations, companies, organisations and individuals in the ICT sector in Africa.
Its yearly Summit is a landmark gathering of African ICT Association/business/professional representatives to discuss policy making issues and engaging with the summit host country government and private organizations and lCT professionals to share knowledge, experiences, and identifying potential collaboration. The 6th Summit at which this handover of leadership baton took place was a time for Olufuye to recap how the Association had faired in its short existence of 6 years.
Olufuye listed seventeen (17) achievements which landmarked his tenure as pioneer Chairman. These relate to establishment, registration, spread, affiliations and summits. Specifically Olufuye listed them as:
• Articulation of the alliance Constitution
• Development of the AfICTA Strategy document
• Development and hosting of the website and successful migration from .org to .africa
• Registration of the alliance in Nigeria
• Registration in Nigeria of the trademarks: Africa ICT Champion and Africa ICT Personality Awards
• Setting up of a self-sustaining AfICTA Secretariat with 2 staff
• Unbroken organisation of the Alliance Summit for the past 6years
• Constructive African ICT Business/Professional Advocacy/engagement at the United Nations (UN) vis-a-vis Membership of the UN Working Group (WG) on Internet Governance Forum (IGF) Improvement 2011, UN Commission on Science and Technology for Development WG on Enhanced Cooperation 2013-2014 & 2016-2018, IGF UN Secretary-General’s Multi-stakeholder Advisory Group (MAG) from 2011 till date.
• Signing of MoUs with Software Engineering Competency Centre (SECC), IT Industry Development Agency (ITIDA), Egypt, National IT Development Agency (NITDA) Nigeria and Asian-Oceania Computing Industry Organisation (ASOCIO), World Information Technology and Services Alliance (WITSA), Alliance for Affordable Internet (A4AI).
• Enhancing links between business and governments across Africa.
• Boosting intra-African Business Match-making for trade and wealth creation across Africa
• Began country focused eConferences in 2018. 1st edition focused on Nigeria (July 19) and the 2nd on South Africa (September 18).
• Initiating the “1m Jobs Initiative by 2025” powered by EITESAL
• Membership of ICC BASIS – International Chamber of Commerce Business Action to Support Information Society
• Membership of ICANN-Business Constituency which has resulted in Outreach collaboration of the constituency with AfICTA since inception in 2013.
• Continuous engagement with the African Union especially on IGF, and
• Growth of member countries from 6 to 30 with 24 African countries to go. Current membership are from Nigeria, South Africa, Egypt, Kenya, Namibia, Cote d’Ivore, Ghana, Tunisia, The Gambia, Niger, Mali, Ethiopia, Burundi, Rwanda, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Tanzania, Zambia, Sudan, Somalia, Libya, Chad, Benin, DRC, Senegal, Uganda, Mauritius, Cameroon, Gabon and Lesotho.
He hinted that a new advisory structure to be called the TRUSTEES has proposed as another layer of maturity for the Alliance.
The incoming Chairman pledged that his Board would build its value proposition with the mission to serve the African continent by focusing on:
• The Digital skills gap for the current and future employment.
• The Industry 4.0
• The Micro Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) empowerment
• The Digital Trade potential and challenges
• The Fintech
• Cyber security, and
• Global and local connectivity & digital content