Dear Esteemed ICTAZ Members,
As we approach the close of 2022, I wish to take the opportunity on behalf of the Executive Council to thank you for your support over the past few months and wish you the best compliments of the season and prosperity for 2023.
With your support, the past year has seen major achievements scored in terms of enhancing the IT profession.
Most importantly, we have witnessed Government’s policy directive to enhance digital skills and the adoption of electronic technology defined in the 8th National Development Plan.
There is no doubt that the uptake of ICT has been on the rise following the impact that Covid-19 had on physical gatherings. The increased use of online platforms has also seen an increase in fraud and cyber related crimes and hence the need for increased vigilance and cyber security skills.
As the ICT Association of Zambia we have continued to collaborate with the Ministry of Technology and Science and other key stakeholders to create an environment that allowed open dialogue and the advancement of the IT sector.
Apart from participating in the revision of the National ICT Policy, ICTAZ members also contributed to the revision of the Cyber Security and Cyber Crimes Act as well as contributed to dialogue around the Data Protection Act.
The Association was also able to review the association constitution to better align the the ICTAZ Act of 2018.
Unfortunately, this Constitution Review process saw low participation of the members and I wish to take this opportunity to remind members that ICTAZ is founded on an Act of Parliament and so ALL practicing Information Technology professionals must subscribe to the basic rules and regulations as outlined in the 2018 ICTAZ Act, the ICTAZ Constitution and the Code of Ethics. All the documents are available on the website: www.ictaz.org.zm.
Active participation in ICTAZ activities, as well as compliance to the laws, is one of the best ways that we can build our profession.
I am proud to say that we successfully hosted the International ICT Expo and Fintech Festival in September that saw over 400 delegates and 54 exhibitors participate.
The Expo created a platform at which very rich and diverse panel discussions were held and several companies were able to showcase how IT it being utilised in public and private administrative and business processes.
Our winners of the E-voting hackathon alongside other notable industry players were recognised at the event.
It is important to acknowledge the continued support rendered by the Ministry of Technology and Science in the programmes that we have undertaken. The Honourable Minister Felix Mutati has actively promoted the ICT sector locally and internationally.
We have also seen the President Hakainde Hichilema’s commitment to universal internet connectivity which saw the Head of State personally engage Star Link.
In November, Zambia hosted the Innovation Africa Summit which attracted more African ministers of information and more than 300 international delegates, which is yet another indication of support from the Republican President.
At that meeting, Government announced the intention to indroduce a Start Up Bill aimed at supporting start up businesses. As we pursue the establishment of a Digital Economy, there is need to support innovators and the growth of the private sector.
It is hoped that this initiative will provide the long-term funding and capacity building that most innovators lack in establishing workable local solutions.
The 4th International Conference in ICT (ICICT) saw researchers and scholars gather once again after a Covid-19 induced 3-year break. The event has reminded us of the importance of research and professional publications. ICTAZ supports the partner universities and key stakeholders in ensuring the documentation of developments in the ICT sector. I wish to encourage our members to visit the ICICT Journal web portal.
The information technology profession is growing in significance and we must maintain its momentum. Let us be compliant and encourage more professionals to join ICTAZ.
The ICT Association of Zambia looks forward to scoring more wins in 2023.
We are looking forward to a new year that brings new challenges to overcome and opportunities for success & growth.
Happy and Prosperous New year!!
CLEMENT SINYANGWE – FLICTAZ