Kenya to consolidate spike in tech use during COVID-19

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Kenya’s Minister of Information and Communication Technology, Innovation and Youth Affairs, Joe Mucheru, says use of technology spiked because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

As a result, “we are working with the internet providers to ensure young people are protected,” the Minister told the press during Sunday’s coronavirus daily press briefing by the Health Ministry.

We are focusing on training those using technology. Our target is is to train over 5000 young people on how they can go online and get jobs to earn a living; we are working on ensuring cyber space is safe for everyone.

He thanked the media for their involvement in helping educate the public in that direction via educational content on TV and radio.

On the area of privacy he said: “Data protection law is already is place. We shall be employing a commissioner in two weeks time. Our goal is to protect people’s privacy.”

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Internet access restored to western Oromia in Ethiopia

Internet connectivity has been restored to a part of Ethiopia’s Oromia region which has been without connection for about three months.

In January this year, is a partial internet cut was imposed across several towns in western Ethiopia. President of the region confirmed early Tuesday that due to improvement in the security situation in the region, connection was to be restored. State-run FBC confirmed that connectivity had returned.

Activists, press and human rights groups had actively campaigned for government to restore internet access in the affected areas. The campaign got a fresh impetus with the coronavirus pandemic as campaigners insisted that people in the region risked not getting enough information of the public health crisis.

At the time of the blackout, government defended the move as necessary to curb rising insecurity in the area where the army was engaged in exchanges with a former rebel group. Over a dozen officials of the region have been killed in the last few months by suspected rebels in the area.

The BBC confirmed back in January that “in some areas mobile call services were also not working.” The state monopoly EthioTelecom stayed away from commenting on the situation.

The outfit twice last year cut the internet; first over national level examinations and in the wake of a foiled coup in the Amhara regional state.

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