Regulation in times of pandemic and lessons for the future: African responses – East Africa
In the final part of this 3-part series looking at the response of regulators and industry across Africa to the COVID-19 pandemic, this webinar concentrated on Eastern Africa and examined the national strategies adopted to guarantee continuity of essential services, protect lives and reduce the negative impact on the economy.
How might the actions of regulators and policy makers inform and facilitate future modernisation of current regulatory frameworks? Will industry obligations continue? What does the ‘new normal’ look like from a policy, regulatory and commercial perspective?
Looking particularly at issues such as spectrum availability, digital infrastructure, health & education services, cybersecurity, and combating disinformation, the event was moderated by the 2020 Chair of the Body of European Regulators for Electronic Communication (BEREC). With expert speakers from the region who highlighted the unique challenges across the continent and also innovative responses – particularly involving mobile technology – developed in Africa for Africa.
Written report of the IIC Chapter webinar held on 19 January 2021Download
Dr Ally Y Simba is the Executive Secretary of the East African Communications Organisations (EACO). He was appointed to the position on 1st August 2017 for a period of four years. Prior to his appointment he had served as a Director of Knowledge Management with the Tanzania Commission for Science and Technology (COSTECH). He has more than 16 years of experience in communication industry where he has worked as an Engineer with a mobile phone operator, as a researcher, as regulator, and as policy maker with the central government of the United Republic of Tanzania.
Dr Simba was an Expert Researcher with the National Institute of Information and Communications Technology, Tokyo, Japan from 2006 to 2011, where he was involved in research on the effect of exposure from mobile phones and base stations to the human health. From 2011 to 2013, he was a Manager for Planning and Research with the Tanzania Communications Regulatory Authority (TCRA), Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania. From 2013 to 2015, he served as a Director of ICT at the Ministry of Communication Science and Technology (MCST) of the United Republic of Tanzania and later appointed to the position of Director General of TCRA in July 2015, a position he served until December, 2016. Dr Simba has published widely in peer-reviewed international journals and presented his research work in more than 30 international conferences. He participated actively in the work of the Study Group 5 of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) since 2009.
During his tenure at the MCST, Dr Simba was a group leader of the local expert group which formulated Tanzania’s Cyber laws, namely Cyber Crime Act and E-Transactions Act in 2015 and served as Project Director for the World Bank funded Regional Communication Infrastructure Programme (RCIP) as well as National ICT Broadband Backbone (NICTBB) Project.
Dr Simba is a Chartered Engineer, registered with the UK Engineering Council and a Fellow of the Institution of Engineering and Technology, UK, where he served an International Professional Registration Advisor for Engineering Professional Registration from April 2011 to March 2014. He is also a Senior Member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE). Dr Simba appears in 11th Edition of the Marquis Who’s Who in Science and Engineering, 2011–2012. He was the recipient of the Japanese Government Scholarship (Monbusho Scholarship) from 2000 to 2006. Since 2018, Dr Simba has been serving as a member of Joint Steering Committee of the Center of Excellence for ICT in East Africa.
Dr Simba received his BSc (Hons.) degree in Electronics Science and Communications from the University of Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania, in 1998, and the ME and PhD degrees in Electronics and Information Engineering from Hokkaido University, Sapporo, Japan, in 2003 and 2006, respectively.
Annette Ssemuwemba is Deputy Executive Director at the Executive Secretariat for the Enhanced Integrated Framework at the World Trade Organization. In this role, she is designated as the Chief Operating Officer responsible for the design of projects and programmes to support the least developed countries’ (LDC) trade capacity development.
Ms Ssemuwemba was previously the Chief Strategy and Results Officer and member of the Senior Leadership team at TradeMark East Africa. In this role, she was responsible for strategy execution and results delivery across a portfolio of countries in East Africa. She is an international development professional with over 20 years of experience in international trade and development, primarily trade policy formulation, regional integration, trade facilitation and trade-related capacity-building at national and regional levels.
Ms Ssemuwemba holds a wealth of experience in designing and implementing trade capacity-building programmes that address development needs of countries, particularly the LDCs.
She holds a Masters in Business Administration.
Dr Brahim Ghribi has more than 25 years of international work experience and broad multi-disciplinary competencies combining engineering and state of the art technological research, managerial, and business driven responsibilities in North America, Europe, and Africa-Middle-East. He has spent the past 8 years developing and implementing regional government affairs, policy and regulatory strategies in the Africa Middle-East for Alcatel-Lucent, and Nokia.
Prior to his government relations and policy affairs roles, he held various international roles including regional director of strategic marketing, global head of Broadband wireless Integration practice, senior technology architect, and lead expert in the ITU 3GPP standardization working groups, were he contributed to shape some of the key telecommunications standards.
A computer scientist by training with a Bachelor and a Master’s degrees from Ottawa University in Canada, Dr Brahim Ghribi is also the holder of a Doctorate Degree of Business Administration from the Paris School of Business.
Irene Kaggwa Sewankambo was appointed Acting Executive Director of the Uganda Communications Commission in February 2020. Prior to that appointment, Mrs Sewankambo was Director of Engineering and Communications Infrastructure at the Commission, a position she continues to hold alongside that of Ag. Executive Director.
Mrs Sewankambo has over 20 years experience in the ICT sector spanning policy development, research, regulation and implementation in various aspects of ICT policy and regulation.
An engineer by profession, Mrs Sewankambo holds a Master of Science in Communications Systems and Signal Processing from the University of Bristol in the United Kingdom and a Master of Science in Economic Management and Policy (Business Economic Pathway) from the University of Strathclyde in the United Kingdom. She acquired her Bachelor of Science Degree in Electrical Engineering from Makerere University in Kampala.
Kui Kinyanjui is the Head of Regulatory and Public Policy at Safaricom.
At Safaricom, Ms Kinyanjui is tasked with developing a comprehensive regulatory and stakeholder engagement strategy and driving its delivery across multiple internal and external stakeholder groups. She works with organisational leaders and worldwide affiliates to identify unique market opportunities, leading a team that is responsible for managing government relations, regulatory compliance, public policy analysis and external stakeholder relations.
Throughout her career, Ms Kinyanjui has complimented the growth of Fortune 500 companies, African tech unicorns and global non-profits who are united by the same goal: how to creatively use technology to enable access to critical services.
From tracing how Artificial Intelligence can enhance medical diagnoses; to exploring the context behind the growth of M-PESA, the world’s most successful money transfer project; to discovering how technology can create a more sustainable and open spaces for knowledge, Ms Kinyanjui has worked with a variety of organisations to build audiences and create sustainable stakeholder engagement.
Prior to her current role at Safaricom, Ms Kinyanjui worked in San Francisco for the Wikimedia Foundation. She has previously also served as the Head of Corporate Communications at Safaricom, as well as working for IBM’s Growth Markets Unit, Nation Media Group and several others.
Dan Sjöblom is the Director General of the Swedish Post and Telecom Authority (PTS) and was appointed by the Swedish Government on 1 February 2017.
He served as Chairperson of BEREC (Body of European Regulators for Electronic Communication) in 2020, having served as a vice-chair in 2019.
Prior to taking up his position, Mr Sjöblom was the Director General for the Swedish Competition Authority for eight years, between 2009 and 2017.
He is also board member of the Swedish Broadband Council.
Mr Sjöblom has served as a civil servant at the European Commission between 1996 and 2009. He holds a Master of Laws from Stockholm University.
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