Government seeks to borrow Shs550b to boost ICT

Monday February 24 2020

ICT State minister Peter Ogwang (left) and

ICT State minister Peter Ogwang (left) and Dokolo North MP Paul Amoru (centre) at the commissioning of the computer laboratory at Agwata Secondary School in Dokolo District at the weekend. COURTESY PHOTO 

By PATRICK EBONG

Dokolo- Government plans to borrow $150 million (about Shs550 billion) from Exim Bank of China to carry out investments in the information and communication technology (ICT) sector, State minister for ICT Peter Ogwang has said.

According to Mr Ogwang, the money will be used to equip secondary schools countrywide with computers to facilitate e-learning.
He made the revelation while handing over 20 computers to Agwata Secondary School in Dokolo District on Saturday. The computers were donated by the Uganda Communications Commission (UCC).

“Government is considering acquiring a loan of $150 million from Exim Bank of China to develop the national backbone infrastructure to begin implementing ICT investments in schools, referral hospitals, districts and lower local government,” Mr Ogwang said.
“This will allow government to track service delivery such as how government drugs are delivered by National Medical Stores to health units and then to patients,” he added.

The minister also pledged to support all the six secondary schools in Dokolo North constituency with 20 computers each to boost ICT.
Mr Paul Amoru, the Dokolo North Member of Parliament, said people must be committed to transform education in the district through ICT evolution, which he said is the driver of development in Uganda today.

Mr Amoru advised that learners must be exposed to ICT training right from primary level so that when they reach secondary level, they are able to become computer experts.

The legislator added that ICT must go with innovation so that it can effectively benefit Ugandans.
Ms Jane Obeny, the Agwata Secondary School headmistress, thanked the government for the timely intervention. She said after a violent strike in July 2019, their school was left in total ruin.
The district chairperson, Mr Frederick Odongo, said a number of mechanisms will be put in place to sustainable ICT training in schools.

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