The sixth National Conference on Communications organized by Uganda Communications Commission (UCC) in collaboration with Makerere University’s College of Engineering, Design Art and Technology (CEDAT) has today 3rd March commenced.
The function was officiated by the minister of ICT and National guidance Judith Nabakooba, together with government officials and other academicians.
“I am pleased to be associated with the National Conference on Communications organized by Uganda Communications Commission (UCC) in collaboration with Makerere University’s College of Engineering, Design Art and Technology (CEDAT),”Says Nabakooba.
Under the them “Connectivity, Resilience, and Innovation in the Covid-19 Era, the minister recommended the organizers for coming up with such a relevant and timely theme, which speaks directly to the current situation regarding COVID-19 and the role of ICT in mitigating the impact of the pandemic.
Nabakooba says her ministry has been at the center of the Government’s COVID-19 intervention, coordinating information, dissemination, providing platforms for business continuity in Government and telecommunications support, among other initiatives, and I wish to commend the sector for the support rendered in that regard.
The minister said that the conference aims to explore innovations and identify opportunities for Uganda relating to emerging technologies of the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) such as Artificial Intelligence, the Internet of Things, ICT security issues, 5G cellular networks and systems,
Nabakooba added that from the onset that the Government of Uganda is committed to putting ICTs at the forefront of the country’s transformation agenda.
“Our vision as Government is to leverage ICTs to spur economic transformation and improve people’s lives; Technology per se will be of no or little consequence if it doesn’t translate into higher standards of living for our people.” Noted Nabakooba.
She adds that, this is why the Government has over the last two decades invested a great deal in information and communications infrastructure.
“The dividends are evident as Uganda’s communications sector is today among the fastest growing in the region and Africa,” adds Nabakooba.
Nabakooba further remarked that in addition to building ICT infrastructure, government’s role has been to create an enabling environment to robust legal and regulatory framework to facilitate the transformation of Uganda into a knowledge-based economy.
The minister adds that with these interventions, Uganda’s indicators in the communications sector have improved fundamentally over the years, to mention just a few from the latest market performance report where the number of users of telephony services (mobile) is now 26.5 million, tele-density (number of telephone connections for every hundred individuals living within an area) is at 64%, the number of Internet subscribers (mobile) is now 20.1 million.
She says in the broadcasting sub-sector, Uganda has achieved 100% radio signal coverage with over 300 operational FM stations adding this performance coming on the backdrop of the disruption occasioned by the COVID-19 pandemic over the past year demonstrates the sector’s resilience, recovery and potential for future growth.
Nabakooba revealed that the Government is behind NCC in quest to put Uganda on the technology map and the President has been consistent in support of Science and Technology.
UCC in collaboration with Makerere University established a National Conference on Communications (NCC) in October 2010 with the aim of strengthening communications research particularly of locally relevant solutions through discipline-specific conference series in communications.