Kenya is eying top positions in ICT organizations in the continental and at the global level.
In Africa, Kenya is seeking the Secretary General’s seat of the African Telecommunications Union (ATU), the continental ICT body. The elections will be held on 17th August at the ATU Conference of Plenipotentiaries, also being hosted by Kenya alongside other meetings.
At the global level, Kenya is seeking to be re-elected to the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) Council, a key decision making organ of the UN specialised agency for ICTs. For the two positions, Kenya is banking on its strong and vibrant ICT industry in the region as a launch pad for the leadership positions.
‘‘I envision ATU as that one united voice of the continent on matters ICT through leveraging on the collective efforts of stakeholders, including the academia, industry players, governments, and other intergovernmental organizations,’’
John Omo, Director of Legal Services, Communications Authority of Kenya
At the ITU, Kenya is seeks to get one of the 13 slots reserved to the African continent out of the 48 seats of the Council. Kenya has been a member of the Council since 1982.
The ITU Council oversees the affairs of the Union in between Plenipotentiary Conferences usually held every four years. In the region, Kenya is fronting Mr. John Omo as its flag bearer for the position of Secretary General of the ATU.
The contest has also attracted candidatures from Chad, Nigeria, Republic of Congo and Burundi. The seat is currently held by Mr. Abdulakarim Soumaila a national of Niger, who is currently serving his second and final four-year term.
Omo is currently the Director of Legal Services at the Communications Authority of Kenya (CA) and brings along a wealth of experience in the ICT industry spanning over 25 years. His vision is to re-model the African Telecommunications Union (ATU) into a member responsive organization that serves as the reference point for ICT on the continent in order to propel socio-economic transformation.
‘‘I envision ATU as that one united voice of the continent on matters ICT through leveraging on the collective efforts of stakeholders, including the academia, industry players, governments, and other intergovernmental organizations,’’ says Omo.
His priority is to build the capacity of member states, increase access to broadband, strengthen cross-border interconnectivity, and infuse innovation that can enable Africa harness the immeasurable opportunities that the digital age presents.