The Ministry of Posts, Telecommunications and Technology (MPTT) held a 3-day national consultative conference on telecommunications and technology in Mogadishu from 6th to 8th May 2017.
The conference, which was officially opened by the Prime Minister and closed by the Speaker of the Parliament, had more than 60 representatives from Office of President, Office of the Prime Minister, Minister, State Minister and Deputy Minister of Posts, Telecom and Technology, Parliamentary Committee on Information and Telecom, State Attorney General, Central Bank, and ministries in charge of telecommunications from federal states of Puntland, Southwest, Jubbaland, GalMudug, and HirShabelle, telecom and ISP operators, and university associations.
The conference, which was closed by the Speaker of the Parliament, shows the Ministry’s commitment to build confidence within stakeholders, exchange information and ideas through direct communication, and share Ministry’s annual plans for the sector.
After extensive discussions and exchanging views, the followings recommendations were made:
1. The Ministry shall maintain close partnership with relevant state-level ministries through direct communications and by organizing similar meetings to help stakeholders share information, plans and build confidence among them. The next national conference is planned to be held in Jubbaland.
2. The Ministry shall strengthen the existing relations between the Federal Ministry and state-level ministries in charge of telecommunications by devolving the federal services through the states.
3. The Ministry shall take into consideration the needs of the state-level ministries in charge of telecommunications in the areas of telecommunications and technology.
4. The Ministry shall strengthen its partnership with telecom operators, ISPS and university associations for advancement of the sector.
5. The Ministry shall endeavor to promote and expand the services of Somalia’s top-level domain (dotSO) to all federal and state-level institutions.
6. State-level ministers in charge of telecom and technology underscored the need to review the World Bank-funded ICT Support Project so that it may reflect the priorities of the beneficiaries and have an effective impact on their institutions.
TELECOM AND INTERNET
7. The participants unanimously agreed the urgent need for sector to have the Telecommunications Act passed. The Act, once implemented, will address serious challenges the sector is currently facing in the areas of spectrum management, licensing, taxation, government-sector relations, etc.
8. The sector requests the Ministry to facilitate the establishment of a one-stop solution for all issues related to registration, licensing, taxation, etc.
9. The telecom operators and ISPs ask the Ministry to work with other government agencies in creating a conducive environment for sector, especially in their movements during emergency times.
TECHNOLOGY AND EDUCATION
10. The Ministry shall encourage the use of ICT in all government institutions in order to improve security, revenue collection, and other government services.
11. To promote the establishment of ICT vocational schools and encourage technology-based innovation amongst the youth to help them create more employment opportunities.
12. To enhance the capacity of civil servants in the use of ICT through re-launching of the National Institute for Telecom and Technology.
13. The Ministry shall work with the Ministry of Education in the incorporation of ICT in Somalia’s school curriculum so that children may embrace technology at an early stage.
14. The Ministry shall help education and research institutions in the promotion of ICT in education and in promoting ICT centres where students can access cost-effective ICT services.
15. Promote Somalia’s top-level domain, especially (.edu.so), within the education sector so that they can access specialized services for them.
Finally, the Conference expresses its gratitude to all the conference participants, especially to the chair and MPs from the Parliamentary Committee on Information and Telecom, the State Attorney General, ministers from state ministers of telecommunications, and intellectuals who shared their experiences with the ICT sector.
Lastly, the Minister for Posts, Telecom and Technology, H.E. Eng Abdi Ashur Hassan, extends his special gratitude to the president of the Federal Republic of Somalia, His Excellency Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed; Speaker of the Parliament, Hon. Mohamed Sheik Osman (Jawari); and H.E. Hassan Ali Khaire, Prime Minister, who all expressed their support for the work that the Ministry is currently undertaking.