The Director General of the National Communications Authority (NatCA) Daniel Kaitibi held a fruitful discussion with the CEO of SMART Africa, Mr. Lacina Kone, in Kigali on the 24th of October 2022.

The main purpose of the meeting was to engage with SMART Africa to see how they can support NatCA’s transformation from a Commission to an Authority.

SMART Africa is a bold and innovative commitment from African Heads of State and Government to accelerate sustainable socio-economic development on the continent, ushering Africa into a knowledge economy through affordable access to Broadband and usage of Information and Communications Technologies.

It is against this backdrop that the Director General of NatCA sees SMART Africa as a worthy partner to accelerate growth in the ICT ecosystem of Sierra Leone.

In making his statement, DG Kaitibi noted the role of SMART Africa in supporting Sierra Leone to fulfil its potential in the ICT sector. He spoke of President Dr. Julius Maada Bio’s commitment to meeting all international obligations with SMART Africa and other telecommunication partners in order for Sierra Leone to leverage benefits from those organisations.

Daniel Kaitibi went further to say, NatCA is looking forward to capacity building and skills training to ensure the ongoing transformation from a Commission to an Authority becomes a reality.

SMART Africa CEO Mr. Kone expressed his appreciation for hosting the delegation from Sierra Leone. He said, he is delighted to work with NatCA and provide all necessary support to them. The DG of Smart Africa Lacina Kone spoke on the sustainable approach to digital transformation and ways by which African Telecommunications Regulators can be strategically empowered. His theme was ‘Regulation for Development in the 21st Century. He proposed to host a Workshop that brings together relevant stakeholders in the telecommunications space on 5G, Intra Africa Connectivity Project, Smart Africa Continental Backbone, Modern Regulatory Environment, Universal Access, Digital Identity & Revenue Assurance.

The Chairman of the Information & Communications Committee in the House of Parliament, Hon. Boston Munda informed the Smart Africa Team of the strategic role played by the Committee in ensuring the Regulator regulates in accordance with its mandate. He further highlighted the pivotal role Members of Parliament played to enact the new Act which has now transformed the Commission into an Authority

The Chief Executive of the Universal Access Development Fund (UADF) Marie Momoh expressed thanks and appreciation to the DG of Smart Africa and his Team for giving UADF an opportunity to present its case and establish collaboration with Smart Africa to bear on the UADF in Sierra Leone.

The meeting climaxed with a Presentation of a gift from the NatCA Delegation to the CEO of SMART Africa.

By Bah

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