February 8th, 2016

African parliamentarians turn to CTO and CPA for guidance on ICTs

LONDON, 8 FEBRUARY 2016 – Parliamentarians from Namibia, Mauritius, Zambia, Kenya, Uganda, Seychelles and Nigeria meeting at a regional workshop on ICT for parliamentarians have agreed that the Commonwealth Telecommunications Organisation (CTO) and the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA) should continue to assist them in their legislative work on ICTs.

The agreement between the African parliamentarians was one key outcome of a workshop held by the two sister organisations on 3 – 4 February 2016 in Abuja, Nigeria.

The workshop was convened by the two Commonwealth organisations to discuss the role of parliaments in areas such as the governance of the Internet and cyberspace. Also represented at the workshop were the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names & Numbers (ICANN), the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), the National Information Technology Development Agency of Nigeria (NITDA), and Nigeria Internet Governance Forum (NIGF).

The event was officially opened by the Honourable Yusuf Sulaimon Lasun, Deputy Speaker, for the Nigerian Parliament’s House of Representatives following a keynote address by the Honourable Adebayo Shittu, Minister of Communications of Nigeria.

The topics of the presentations at this workshop have been superb. The workshop helped me to navigate my way within the various institutions that fall within my portfolio” said Honourable Ephraim K. Belemu, Member of Parliament, Chair of the Committee on Communication, Transport, Works and Supply from the Parliament of Zambia.

I have attended many conferences but this conference was particularly interesting. We have to carry the energy and enthusiasm we have gained from this conference back to our countries” said Honourable Barnabas Tinkasimire, Member of Parliament, Buyaga County and Member of the Committee on Information and Communication Technology from the Parliament of Uganda.

The two Commonwealth agencies have collaborated in the delivery of similar activities since 2011.

We are pleased to be working with the CPA in organising such events, as the two organisations complement each other well in the area of legislation and cyberspace”, said Shola Taylor, Secretary-General of the CTO.

The Secretary-General of the CPA, Akbar Khan said “Connecting legislators is fundamental to finding solutions to common problems and ICTs have massive potential to stimulate economic and social growth within the Africa region. This joint CPA/CTO programme for Parliamentarians is a crucial element in ensuring that legislators are at the forefront of these developments.

For information about this workshop, please email Osman Siddiqui at o.siddiqui@cto.int or call us on +44 20 8600 3820.

About the Commonwealth Telecommunications Organisation

The Commonwealth Telecommunications Organisation is the oldest and largest Commonwealth membership organisation in the field of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs), and uses its experience and expertise to support members in using ICTs to deliver effective development interventions that enrich, empower, equalise and emancipate people within the Commonwealth and beyond. More information about us here