By Mourice Seretta
ICT Authority and Huawei completed the latest online training for civil servants to bring them the latest knowledge on Information and Communications Technologies (ICT) trends, e-government, smart city, Internet of Things (IoT) and cyber security. The training builds on the tremendous growth of ICT use during COVID-19 and will help fast-track digitization of government nationwide. Participants are joining from all over the country and include County Governments as well as Parastatals.
More than 400 civil servants registered for the first phase of the training over 5 days that was jointly organized by the ICT Authority and Huawei. Second and third phases of the training are already being planned to reach thousands more civil servants nationwide. It is part of an ongoing effort by the ICT Authority of capacity building for government employees as well as to ensure the implementation of ICT standards and secure ICT infrastructure and systems. This is in line with the ICT Authority’s mission to champion and harness ICT for efficient and effective public service delivery, wealth creation and well-being of Kenyans.
To this end, the content for this training has been specifically chosen to address the current needs for civil servants, many of whom have been working virtually since the COVID-19 pandemic struck the country. They learn about effective and efficient online communication including video conference-based meetings as well as information and cyber security. This is in line with the government guidelines on cyber hygiene for government staff working from home that were released in March.
The training explores the latest ICT trends, such as in the use of big data and artificial intelligence (AI), and the latest in e-government and smart city projects. This is particularly timely as the national and county governments expand their digitization of public services such as education and health, as well as management of systems such as revenue systems and public utilities. It is also timely as the Konza City takes shape with various smart city facilities planned for next year provided by Huawei.
Huawei experts have trained and certified lecturers from 30 Universities and training centers in Kenya through the ICT Academy programme and it is these local lecturers who are provide the training, combining the global expertise from Huawei courses alongside their local understanding of the situation, context and needs. This is an excellent example of collaboration between government, academia and private sector which is also a sustainable mechanisms for building and transferring expertise within Kenya.
The civil servant training is one aspect of a multi-pronged capacity building partnership between Huawei and the ICT Authority that also includes training Kenyan youth through the Seeds for the Future program and the professional training offered to interns enrolled in the Presidential Digital Talent Programme.
Dr. Katherine Getao, CEO of the ICT Authority said that: “ICT Authority appreciates our partners who support our ICT capacity building mandate by offering appropriate and cost effective training programmes to our stakeholders. A successful digital economy is founded on a culture of continuous learning.”
Opening the training, Fiona Pan, Deputy CEO for Public Affairs of Huawei Kenya thanked the ICT Authority for their strong partnership and support, commending them for initiating this training: “As Kenya implements the Digital Economy Blueprint and the ICT Authority’s Strategic Plan, it is critical to upskill the organisation’s workforce; this will enable the country to take advantage of ICT to power economic growth and deliver public services efficiently and effectively across the country. Huawei is proud and delighted to be able to share our global expertise to contribute.”