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ICT graduates set for county jobs in digital talent drive

victorBusiness Daily By OKUTTAH MARK,

Monday March 28, 2016

County governments are set to benefit from 400 graduates of ICT-related courses under the second phase of the Presidential Digital-Talent Programme to boost their ICT human capacity.

Victor Kyalo, the ICT Principal Secretary, said his ministry was in talks with county governments which will see a number of the graduate trainees posted to the devolved units.

The Presidential Digital Talent initiative is a public–private sector partnership run by the ICT Authority. The programme targets recent university IT graduates who have attained first or upper second class honours degree and have been out of school for less than two years.

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Ministry to start pilot distribution of laptops

ictpicDAILY NATION By NATION REPORTER

Tuesday March 22, 2016

The Ministry of ICT is expected to start delivering free laptops on a pilot basis in 150 selected primary schools across the country in the next two weeks.

This follows the unveiling of the Digital Literacy Programme Devices targeting more than 22, 000 public primary schools by Cabinet Secretary Joe Mucheru.

Speaking during the official opening of Connected Summit 2016 conference on Sunday, Mr Mucheru said the ministry is expecting 10,000 devices in the next four weeks.

He added that the ministry is in the process of undergoing proof of concept before officially rolling out the devices to all counties in the whole country.

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Kenya plans ICT sector reforms to regulate Internet firms

mucherupxDAILY NATION By LILIAN OCHIENG'

Friday March 18, 2016

Kenya’s Information minister is reviewing sector guidelines to bring over the top services such as Whatsapp and Facebook under regulation amidst complains by telecom operators over unfair competition.

ICT Cabinet Secretary Joe Mucheru said the new National ICT Sector Policy Guidelines will also dictate the practices within which Mobile Virtual Network Service Operators (MVNO) such as Equitel will operate.

Locally, telecom firms have complained of Facebook, WhatsApp and Viber eating into their revenues despite not being subjected to local taxes. The telcos also say that over the top companies do not have infrastructure locally yet they compete unfairly by offering same voice and text services.

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Zero-rated internet services are much needed in developing economies

internetpicsDAILY NATION By JOHN WALUBENGO

Tuesday March 15,2016

Many readers of this column may not know it, but there is free Internet access in Kenya. 

You did not know that because you belong to a class of privileged users who can afford to pay for Internet service, however expensive it may be.

There is another category of Kenyans who do not enjoy the privilege of being able to pay for their monthly Internet access.  

All the Telco operators in Kenya target this group by offering free Internet service to them in one form or another – with the hope that they will eventually migrate onto the fully paid-up Internet.

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Absence of CA board stalls 4G Internet rollout

caboardpxDAILY NATION By LILIAN OCHIENG'

Thursday March 10, 2016

Telecom operators will have to wait longer before commercialising fourth-generation (4G) Internet, as the Communications Authority awaits a board to approve the radio spectrum surrendered by broadcasters.

The regulator had planned to issue frequency licenses to operators this month, but the absence of a board has stalled the process. A fresh recruitment process for a new board has been quashed by the Industrial Court, acting on an application by members of the disbanded board.

“We need to have a board in place to approve digital dividends [frequencies]. As soon as the board is in place we will do that,” said CA Director-General Francis Wangusi.

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Mucheru urges special training for police to fight cybercrime

cybercrimeDAILY NATION By STELLA CHERONO

Wednesday March 09,2016

The police need specialised training in the use of technology and social media to effectively fight cybercrime in Kenya.

Information and Communications Cabinet Secretary Joe Mucheru said law enforcement agencies need to have the international standard guidelines to effectively deal with the emerging gender-based violence on the internet.

“Training on digital forensics may be appropriate in order to acquire adequate analytical and technical capabilities,” Mr Mucheru said.

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Agency seeks universities to set up Konza campuses

konzaDAILY NATION BY Nation Reporter

Tuesday March 08,2016

Kenya’s Sh595.8 billion Silicon Valley Konza, is seeking local and international universities to set up campuses on its vast land.
In an advert on the local dailies, Konza Technopolis Development Authority (KoTDA) states that interested investors should present “viable proposals for centres of excellence”.
The universities are asked to showcase their innovations that support economic growth. They must also state the ability to adhere to set green technology standards as per the Konza masterplan.

KoTDA says universities are knowledge hubs connecting research and industry demands.

“The universities will be required to develop high-end skills, and innovative business solutions for critical sectors in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM),” states the advert.

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CA buys Sh1bn system to end frequency overlapping

Wangusi3DAILY NATION By LILIAN OCHIENG'

Friday March 04, 2016

Communications Authority has launched Sh1 billion worth spectrum field analyser to monitor illegal activities on local networks.

They systems will monitor all transmissions, track illegal frequencies and allow operators to see all broadcast signals countrywide.

Going forward, CA service delivery to the radio spectrum users will improve, the systems will ensure effective planning, licensing and faster resolution of radio interference complaints.

“Radio spectrum is a scarce natural resource which should be managed prudently for the benefit of citizens,’ said ICT Cabinet Secretary Joe Mucheru, adding that it supports a wide range of telecom, broadcasting, emergency services, transport, scientific research as well as consumer devices.

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Government seeks 400 ICT graduates

Bd-ICT internetDAILY NATION By LILIAN OCHIENG'

Tuesday March 01, 2016

The government has kicked off the recruitment of 400 fresh ICT graduates, who will go through intense training to manage ICT systems in state agencies and ministries.

The graduates will be absorbed by the annual Presidential Digital Talent Programme, which began last year as the government consolidated its ICT systems under the ICT Authority of Kenya (ICTA).

An internal audit on government systems last year showed massive cybersecurity issues as well as lack of skilled labour to adopt to the fast growing ICT sector.

“The Presidential Digital Talent Programme is in line with the country’s Vision 2030, the Jubilee Manifesto and the National ICT Master Plan developed by the ICT Authority,” said a statement by ICTA acting CEO Robert Mugo.

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Digital literacy team visits schools to test e-readiness

MucheruDAILY NATION By LILIAN OCHIENG'

Wednesday February 24, 2016

An assessment of whether schools have power connections and are secure for the rollout of the national laptops project started Monday.

Top officials from the inter-ministerial Digital Literacy Project team visited Roysambu Primary School in Nairobi on a mission to ensure teachers are trained, the institution is secure, and desks are adequate for the computers.

Acting ICT Authority Chief Executive Officer Robert Mugo said visits would be conducted in each of the 150 schools within two weeks.

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Letter that led to withdrawal of CA board’s court petition

DigitalMigration1302doDAILY NATION By WANJOHI GITHAE

Monday February 22, 2016

A letter written to Chief Justice Willy Mutunga on the legality of the Communications Authority of Kenya (CA) board could have been instrumental in the withdrawal of an appeal that sought to overturn a high court judgment that had found seven members of the board were appointed unprocedurally.

The withdrawal set the stage for recruitment of new directors and the CA duly advertised for positions in the Kenya Gazette on February 5.

The seven are Mr Wilbert Choge, Mr Kennedy Nyaundi, Ms Grace Munjuri, Ms Hellen Kinoti, Ms Beatrice Opee, Mr Peter Mutie and Mr Levi Obonyo.

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Police prevent disbanded CA board from holding meeting

CAKDAILY NATION By LILIAN OCHIENG'

Friday February 19,2016

Embattled Communications Authority of Kenya board members were Thursday stopped from holding meetings at the regulator’s headquarters on Waiyaki Way, Nairobi.

Five of the board members, led by Mr Kipsang Choge were locked out of the premises as two administration police kept vigil.

Missing at the scene was director-general Francis Wangusi, who flew to Geneva. Board chairman Ben Ngene Gituku was out of office.

Mr Kipsang had summoned his colleagues to a meeting to discuss ‘disruption of board programme and activities and resultant litigations’.

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Class One pupils to receive laptops on Monday

joemucherupxDAILY NATION By LILIAN OCHIENG'

Tuesday February 16, 2016

Class One pupils in 150 selected schools countrywide will have their first laptops delivered on Monday next week, as the Sh17 billion project begins to be rolled out.

Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology (JKUAT) and Moi University will provide laptops, routers and servers in this pilot phase.

They will then move on to deliver 600,000 laptops to some schools by June in the first phase .

While the Portuguese firm JP SA Couto, in partnership with Moi University, will supply the laptops to 26 counties.

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Govt commissions study to assess usage of ICT

CAKDAILY NATION By LILIAN OCHIENG'

Friday February 12,2016

The Communications Authority (CA) and the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics (KNBS) have begun a study that will assess the usage of ICT services among businesses and in the public sector.

At a press briefing Friday, the two signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to collaborate in collecting data for the study to be published in June.

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CA gives two-day window for board position applicants

BDCAK2406c.JPGBUSINESS DAILY By KIARIE NJOROGE,

Thursday February 11, 2016

Candidates for the vacant Communications Authority of Kenya (CA) board positions have up to Friday to submit their papers after the Information ministry allowed for only two days to receive the applications.

The ministry’s principal secretary, Sammy Itemere, made the call for applicants in newspaper adverts Wednesday, even as the process to recruit the new seven board members is being challenged through two different court cases.

Mr Itemere directed interested applicants to visit the ministry’s website for details on how to apply for the jobs.

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Jubilee Laptops pledge takes shape with award of tender

DNNakuruEducation1702c.JPGDAILY NATION By LILIAN OCHIENG'

Wednesday February 10,2016

The race to deliver one of Jubilee’s flagship 2013 election pledges started Tuesday with the award of a contract to supply free laptops for school children to two consortiums led by public universities.

The bids for the Sh17 billion project were jointly won by Moi University and its partner, JP SA Couto, and by Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology and its partner, Positivo BGH.

Positivo is a joint venture between Positivo Informática Brazil and Argentina BGH while JP SA Couto is a South African research and investing firm.

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Disbanded CA board sues Mucheru, Githu

mucheru-picDAILY NATION By LILIAN OCHIENG'

Tuesday February 09, 2016

The disbanded Communications Authority of Kenya board members have filed a suit against ICT Cabinet secretary Joe Mucheru and the Attorney-General Githu Muigai even as a gazette notice sealed their fate.

The seven members, led by Mr Wilbert Choge, said they were compiling documents to defend their stay at the board.

“We are suing the minister and the AG for contempt. CA is an independent body and any decision regarding the institution can only be done under the board’s instructions,” said Mr Choge on phone Monday.

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Fate of Sh13 billion ICT project hangs in balance

Bd-FibreOptic1.JPGDAILY NATION By ABIUD OCHIENG

Monday February 08, 2016

The fate of a Sh13 billion Information, Communication and Technology (ICT) project intended to improve service delivery in all the 47 counties hangs in the balance after a contract dispute arose between the ICT Authority and a firm supposed to implement the project.

The World Bank-funded project has a strict deadline on implementation and is supposed to be concluded by December this year, or else the funding will be withdrawn.

The project is one of the key developments initiated by the government to improve service delivery in the devolved government using information technology.

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Govt earns Sh2.3bn through e-payments

e-paymentDAILY NATION By LILIAN OCHIENG'

Wednesday February 03, 2016

The government last year collected Sh2.3 billion through its e-Citizen portal, cutting out middle men who thrive on corrupt deals in government services.

Statistics by the ICT Authority stated that already 41 services are live on the portal among them; the land rent payments, immigration services, the National Hospital Insurance Fund, National Social Security Fund and Higher Education Loans Board remittances.

The site launched in 2014 is a gateway to all government services, enabling locals and foreigners to apply for government to citizen (G2C) services and pay via mobile money, debit cards and e-Citizen agents.

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Electoral body to make changes in ICT unit ahead of 2017 elections

CHILOBADAILY NATION By ISAAC ONGIRI

Tuesday February 2, 2016

The electoral agency has initiated a major internal restructuring targeting its crucial information, technology and communications department.

The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) has begun recruiting top ICT managers and assessing its equipment in readiness for the 2017 General Election.

The commission’s new ICT Director James Muhati on Monday said the hiring of top managers is meant to strengthen the capacity of the department and enhance preparations for the elections.

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