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Uganda’s ICT ranking improves – World Bank report

Uganda's ICT ranking has improved

Uganda's ICT ranking has improved

Uganda’s digital transformation is showing signs of improvement, says the World Bank.

In its recent Govtech Index Maturity report for the year 2022, Uganda has shown a marked improvement as they moved to group A from group B in its efforts to use technology to modernize public sector activities. The index reflects trends in the public sector digital transformation in 198 global economies.

According to the World Bank, GovTech is a government approach to public sector modernization that promotes simplicity, efficiency and transparency, with citizens as the center of reforms.

According to Dr Hatwib Mugasa, the executive director of NITA-U, Uganda’s digital agenda is focused on mainstreaming citizens’ engagement, core government systems and online services to support public sector modernization.

Under core government systems, Mugasa notes that NITA-U developed the UG-Hub, an integration platform for core government systems, which enables seamless sharing of data across 93 government entities.

Additionally, Mugasa points to the concluded Regional Communication Infrastructure Program (RCIP) as one of the factors that improved Uganda’s digital competitiveness as seen in the report. NITA-U extended broadband connectivity across the country, established an ISO Tier 3 national data centre, offering centralized hosting services to government institutions.

UGANDA’S PERFORMANCE

According to the report, Uganda’s Govtech Maturity Index for both 2020 and 2022 improved beyond the global average on all focus areas of Core Government Systems Index (CGSI), Public Service Delivery Index (PSDI), Digital Citizen Engagement Index (DCEI) and GovTech Enablers Index (GETI).

The 2022 Govtech Maturity Index ranked Uganda second in East Africa after Tanzania. However, Uganda out competed her East African counterparts on the core government systems index (CGSI) and Digital citizen engagement index (DCEI).

Although there is progress in online service delivery and underlying shared platforms, the digital divide in the world is still on the rise.

This, according to NITA-U, aligns with Uganda’s National IT Survey (2022) findings, which show that although significant progress has been achieved in terms of overall penetration of and utilization of IT services, unequal access to and use of such services across the country remains a major challenge, with especially rural-urban, gender, and income-based divides.

Mugasa believes government should allocate adequate resources for investments in shared digital public infrastructure, digital skills development and innovation in the public sector.

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