GSMA report: COVID-19 Pandemic Puts Digital Transformation back on Agenda
By Our Reporter
As governments across the globe continued responding to COVID-19’s devastation, the mobile sector is playing a crucial role in supporting efforts tackling the pandemic and enhancing health services respond to it, according to a newly released report from GSMA.
While the report found that the pandemic has upended people’s lives, health, and business sectors, people were using technological innovation to adapt to new ways of life during these uncertain times. “In this unprecedented situation, people are quickly adapting to innovative ways of connecting and doing business empowered by connectivity, and digital transformation is no longer just a question but an action for many industries,” the report said.
Mobile operators have played key parts in efforts to respond to the pandemic especially in ensuring smooth communication during health emergencies and improving the coverage of 4G/5G networks in China. The report mentioned that during the construction of two new hospitals in China to treat COVID-19 patients, mobile operators including China Telecom and China Mobile working with Huawei successfully deployed 4G/5G communication networks which resulted in inadequate mobile coverage in the hospitals.
The deployment of 4G/5G networks also assisted with remote consultation and telemedicine. Mobile operators were able to construct up to eight 4G/5G network sites in less than 30 hours following the construction of the hospitals. “The high-quality 4G/5G networks have ensured smooth and uninterrupted communication services in China and provided strong support for the mission-critical response efforts in China during COVID-19 pandemic.”
In African countries like Uganda, Nigeria, and South Africa, information and communication technologies have been at the forefront of ensuring that social and physical distancing measures are observed. South Africa’s health minister Dr. Zweli Mkhize recently spoke about the importance of technological innovation in tackling the virus while receiving Huawei Cloud, Artificial Intelligence (AI) diagnostic systems, and four thermal scanning systems.
This Al-empowered diagnosis tool assists the medical worker to ascertain if someone has COVID – 19. The accuracy of this tool is over 98 percent with CT scan review times reduced by over 80%.
Ghana also found ICTs as a powerful weapon in the fight against COVID-19. Vice President, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia this month launched an app designed to help in tracing people who have come into contact with COVID-19 positive individuals and link them to health professionals for urgent action to be taken.
The pandemic has changed fundamentally the way people communicate, work, shop, learn, and entertain, as life moves from offline to online. In this unprecedented situation, people are quickly adapting to innovative ways of connecting and doing business empowered by connectivity. Thus, the report says, the digital transformation is no longer just a question but an action for many industries.
Growth in Sub-Saharan Africa has been significantly impacted by the ongoing coronavirus outbreak, according to World Bank. However, as combinations of ICTs and health, education and other services have gradually become a new norm, how to facilitate more effective use of these technologies in response to the COVID-19 pandemic can actually decide how strong Africa is going to return to its growth trajectory by adopting new business models and methodologies the emerged from this outbreak.
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Singer Bruno K Exposed For Neglecting His Son, Claims He Only Has One Child
The internet has been abuzz following accusations leveled against Bruno Kiggundu, popularly known as Bruno K, over his alleged neglect of his son, Seth Kiggundu. In a tweet, a user identified as Keith alleged that Bruno K had abandoned his only son, Seth, and only pays attention to his daughter, Briella.
Keith claimed that Vanessa, his best friend, had a baby boy with Bruno K, and the singer had refused to fulfill his parental responsibilities towards Seth. He further accused Bruno of making Vanessa’s life difficult in 2022, which caused her to loathe the singer.
While it is essential to respect the baby’s privacy, it is crucial to hold public figures accountable for their actions, especially when they involve the welfare of children. The allegations against Bruno K are serious and should not be taken lightly.
Child abandonment is a severe issue that affects many children worldwide. It is a form of child neglect that can lead to adverse effects on a child’s development, including emotional and behavioral problems. Children who are abandoned by their parents may experience feelings of rejection, anger, and low self-esteem, which can lead to depression and anxiety.
As a public figure, Bruno K has a responsibility to set a good example for his fans and followers, especially young people. Neglecting one’s child is not only morally wrong but also illegal under Ugandan law. The Children’s Act of Uganda provides that every child has the right to parental care and protection, and any parent who neglects their child can be charged with child abuse.
It is not clear whether the allegations against Bruno K are true, but if they are, he should take responsibility for his actions and do the right thing for his son. Children need both parents to grow up happy and healthy, and neglecting one’s child is unacceptable.
In conclusion, the allegations against Bruno K are serious, and if true, they represent a worrying trend of child neglect in Uganda. As a society, we must hold public figures accountable for their actions and demand that they do the right thing for their children. Let us all strive to create a safe and nurturing environment for all children, regardless of their family background.
Speaker Rt. Hon. Anita Among Orders Minister Dr. Chris Baryomunsi To Stop Making Excuses For Not Establishing The Tribunal
Speaker of parliament Rt. Hon. Anita Among has ordered the Minister of Information, Communications, Technology, and National Guidance, Dr. Chris Baryomunsi to stop making excuses for not establishing the tribunal which she said has been pending for a long.
The speaker’s order followed Dr. Chris Baryomunsi’s attribution of the delay to create the Uganda Communications Tribunal to the recent Cabinet decision on the rationalization of agencies.
The speaker of Parliament Among emphasized the need for the tribunal in place.
“We need a tribunal. How sure are you that we are going to rationalize [government agencies]? We want a tribunal in UCC; we cannot do ad-hoc kind of operations,” Among said.
The Uganda Communications Commission (UCC) Act makes provision for the creation of a tribunal that is supposed to handle complaints relating to the decisions of UCC as provided under Sections 60 and 64 of the Act.
He said this during the Wednesday, 22 March 20223 plenary sitting where he tabled the Uganda Communications (Fees and Fines) (Amendment) Regulations, 2023.
The regulations provide for fees and fines to be paid by telecommunication and broadcasting companies for spectrum or frequency access in order to improve telecommunication services.
His response was prompted by the Leader of Opposition (LOP), Hon. Mathias Mpuuga who accused the minister of ‘sleeping on the job’ by failing to fulfill the provisions of the UCC Act in regard to the creation of the communications tribunal.
“We have raised severally in our alternative policies the question of the minister failing to appoint the UCC tribunal. The minister is now the tribunal; he is acting as the complainant, prosecutor, and judge at the same time. The Ministry [of ICT] is holding media houses at ransom with no recourse to this tribunal,” Mpuuga said.
The Speaker referred the Regulations to the Committee on ICT and National Guidance for scrutiny with a strong caution to UCC not to start collecting fees until Parliament approves the regulations.
Section 93 of the UCC Act, 2013 states that, ‘the minister may, after consultation with the Commission and with the approval of Parliament, by statutory instrument, make regulations for better carrying into effect the provisions of this Act’.
Anti-gay Bill Will Impinge Upon Universal Human Rights, Jeopardize Progress In Fight Against HIV/AIDS In Uganda-White House
The White House and the European Union (EU) have joined the United Nations (UN) and other human rights groups in condemning the just passed Anti-homosexuality Bill.
The Bill that awaits assent from the president was passed by MPs on Tuesday night after a seven-hour heated session.
The bill introduces stricter penalties for people engaged in same-sex activities in Uganda including the death penalty for aggravated homosexuality.
It also proposes life in prison for the offense of “homosexuality” and up to 10 years in jail for attempted homosexuality.
Now White House press secretary, Karine Jean-Pierre says the Bill is one of the most extreme laws targeting homosexuality in the world.
She warns that this will not only impinge upon universal human rights, jeopardize progress in the fight against HIV/AIDS but will also deter tourism and damage Uganda’s international reputation.
“We have great concerns with the passage of the Anti-homosexuality Act by the parliament of Uganda and increasing violence targeting LGBTQI+ persons,” Karine said.
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