President Uhuru Kenyatta used his first Madaraka day speech to emphasize the role played by ICT in Kenya’s development agenda.
In his speech commemorating the 50th anniversary of the country, Kenyatta highlighted the country’s facilitation of ICT infrastructure, use of applications in public service and mobile money transaction technology.
“In the coming years, the government will address challenges identified in the Jubilee manifesto concerning ICT through improved ICT education in schools, training of teachers and the progressive rolling out of WI-FI in major towns within the next five years,” Kenyatta said.
He added his government would continue to position Kenya as a business process outsourcing hub, supported by the development of Konza Tech City.
Kenyatta added it was important for the country to establish such hubs as his government tries to tackle the unemployment problem, with youth working in software development, light electronic manufacturing industries and IT enabled services among the targeted beneficiaries.
He also said the government would establish more incubation hubs for ICT startups under the new Biashara Kenya agency.
On the much anticipated school laptops Kenyatta said his government had already made provisions for the purchase of the devices, pledging to set up 10 computer labs per constituency in an effort to develop e-content.
“In education, we shall make provision for the purchase of laptops in schools. We will also set aside resources for building the capacity of teachers in lower primary schools, for content development, for the deployment of computer labs in ten schools per constituency, and for the connection of power to schools identified for provision of laptops but which do not have power,” he concluded.