By Esther Mmolai
Maun — Acting Batawana paramount chief, Kgosi Kealetile Moremi has underscored the need for relevant authorities to ensure connectivity and accessibility of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) for the benefit of the community.
She described ICT as an important aspect that drives economic activities, noting that Maun was a tourism hub and administration centre of Ngamiland hence the need to ensure connection to the Internet.
Speaking at the 38th Southern African Telecommunication Association (SATA) annual conference in Maun which attracted ICT practitioners in the SADC region recently, she informed the gathering that tourism benefitted from ICT as an enabler of services.
She also revealed that ICT was a tool critical in marketing the regions’ attractions using various platforms.
In addition, Kgosi Moremi noted that the platforms could be websites and other social media platforms to display the products and services thereby driving more traffic to the region.
Tourism traffic, she said, offered many opportunities for residents of Ngamiland as a source of commercial activity for their livelihoods, adding that many entrepreneurs were dependent on the sector through various businesses such as hotels, lodges, safari camps and game drive operators.
She said most lucrative international markets were reached through the Internet and being a part of the global booking platforms, emphasising the fact that good quality connections enhanced the experience and response time in the competitive landscape.
“We believe most people in the region who make a living out of the resources here can improve their lives and move away from poverty by taking advantage of ICT developments,” she added.
Kgosi Moremi said as dikgosi, they were concerned about the less privileged and poverty stricken people, and that they believed that ICT tools such as computer related gadgets coupled with connectivity was one way of providing empowerment through access to information and education.
Giving a brief background about SATA, the association’s executive secretary, Mr Jacob Munodawafa said the association was formed as a specialised institution that offered a regional ICT platform inclusive of stakeholders from across the telecommunications/ICT sector for networking, knowledge sharing and industry advancement.
Since its establishment 38 years back, he said the association had been growing and transforming as the industry evolved.
He said the association worked closely with SADC and the member states who created the association to drive the interests of the industry and cooperating partners with regional and international organisations.
“Our members and cooperating partners are not only from SADC but come from all over the world and when you go to world gatherings, SATA also stands out as the voice of the local industry,” he added.
Through the conferences, Mr Munodawafa said they prioritised their work through the identification of focus areas, new topics and initiatives.
He said they made sure that they maintained their momentum and remain at the cutting edge of technological and service development.
He said the conference would give members an opportunity to share their vision, exchange experiences and promote co-operation between members as well as overcome challenges and exploit opportunities so as to create a better world for their people.
Source : BOPA