Dr. Amani Abu Zaid, Commissioner of the African Union for Infrastructure, Information Technology, Energy and Tourism in Africa, called for an extraordinary meeting of the Bureau of the African Ministerial Committee for Information Technology and Communications.
The meeting was held on Tuesday via video conference and the session was chaired by Dr. Amr Talaat, Chairman of the Ministerial Technical Committee and Minister of Communications and Information Technology in Egypt, in the presence of the members of the Bureau from Burundi, Djibouti, Malawi and Sierra Leone.
During the meeting, Dr. Amani Abu Zaid opened the session, explaining that the session is taking place in unusual global circumstances and a global crisis caused by the Coronavirus pandemic.
She added that African countries imposed strong measures to preserve the lives of African citizens and limit the spread of the Coronavirus through social separation, besides the closure of educational institutions and economic activities, so she called for the use of digital technology in communications, business administration, education and government services via the Internet and digital payments.
Therefore, she emphasized that it is necessary to strengthen and expand the digital infrastructure in Africa to deal with the large increase in information technological demand and ensure that digital services are running safely and provided quickly to everyone in Africa.
And Dr. Amani Abu Zaid also pointed out that the crisis of COVID-19 has become the biggest catalyst for digital transformation on a large scale in Africa, as electronic services have now become more essential for relations between the government and citizens.
The African Union Commissioner thanked African Information Ministers in Cairo and all workers in the sector as well as telecommunications companies and digital applications for the great effort, procedures and exceptional services that were made available in light of this great challenge.
Dr. Amani Abu Zaid called on all African states to take advantage of the current valuable opportunity to accelerate the process of digital transformation in the continent and allow rapid economic recovery by building a new reality based on technology and digitization.
She explained that by saying that the African Union had put digitization on the list of development priorities in Africa then formulated the African strategy for digital transformation, which was presented to African ministers during the Ministerial Committee for Information in Africa, which was held in Sharm El Sheikh in November 2019 and approved by African heads of state and government at the summit In February 2020.