Women making strides in technology

Ms Stella Alibateese - National Personal Data Protection Director, National Information Technology Authority, Uganda (NITA-U)

What you need to know:

The world has evolved with more women taking a fair share in the digital space. 

Women’s efforts in information, communication and technology are now felt across board rooms with most taking on serious roles in software developing, ICT policy, financial technology, and telecommunication.

As we celebrate Women’s Day, we cast a spotlight on women who are revolutionalising Uganda’s ICT sector and what drove their aspirations. 

Ms Stella Alibateese- National Personal Data Protection Director, National Information Technology Authority, Uganda (NITA-U)

Alibateesa a practising advocate with 25 years’ experience with interests in ICT policy. 

10 years of this experience has been spent in the ICT sector where she has made tremendous contribution to regulation of the ICT sector.

She is currently taking the lead in implementing the Data Protection and Privacy Act. 2019. A law that regulates the collection and processing of personal data.

Prior to her current position, she worked as the director, regulation and legal services at the National Information Technology Authority, Uganda (NITA-U).

She led teams in the development of Laws including the Data Protection and Privacy Act 2019 and Legal Instruments for regulation of the ICT sector with a focus on the development of Electronic government in Uganda.

As a result, she has contributed to the improvements of Uganda’s ratings on the cyber security indices as a country with a thriving IT sector in a good enabling environment.

Alibateesa believes all evolving IT eco systems must have data protection and privacy laws. Infact, it is common knowledge that a lot of information is collected about us as individuals on a daily basis.

The Masters of Laws graduate from University of London is passionate about issues affecting youth and women and believes that through ICT, they can be empowered to develop and harness their talents to overcome the various challenges they face.

Experience

Alibateesa also worked with the National Social Security Fund (NSSF) for 10 years where she rose to the position of Deputy Corporation Secretary/Ag. Corporation Secretary, at Messrs Hunter and Greig Advocates and Tropical Bank Limited.

She holds a Master of Laws (University of London UK), Post graduate Diploma in Project Planning and Management (Uganda Management Institute), Post Graduate Diploma in Legal Practice (Law Development Centre, Kampala) and a Bachelor of Laws (Hons) (Makerere University).

She is a GIAC Certified Professional: Law of Data Security and Investigations (GLEG), and an IAPP Certified Information Privacy Manager. She is an advocate and Commissioner for Oaths and a member of various professional associations.

Susan Mugyenyi Ataremwa, Founder- Funa Ride

Susan Mugyenyi Ataremwa, Founder- Funa Ride

She’s a Business Computing graduate who majored in Database management and has been in the tech space for 9 years so far.

Mugenyi has worked mainly as an account manager with top internet solutions providers such as SimbaNET Uganda and Datanet Uganda to sell Internet, data, cloud and IT security services to top companies.

She’s now a techprenuer who has invested in a ride hailing business - which has seen an explosive growth across the globe in the last decade growing on the back of high smartphone usage and Internet.

Mugenyi established Funaride, a car sharing or pooling App that connects drivers and passengers in the same area code heading to the same direction that has been around for two years.

Inspiration

Her inspiration to start Funaride App was rooted from a Ugandan culture of giving rides to family, friends and acquaintances in areas heading to the same direction.

She has seen many people get stranded on stages during peak hours and festive seasons, and therefore decided to create an App where both the drivers and passenger’s information will be available lessening the risk that comes with strangers being in the same vehicle especially for women.  

Mugenyi’s ride hailing application has grown to 2,000 subscribers and has made hundreds of trips.

She observes the perception of Ugandans towards ride hailing apps is still skeptical, but many are slowly embracing the technology with high smartphone usage to escape the inconveniences in using public transport.

Ms Stella Alibateese - National Personal Data Protection Director, National Information Technology Authority, Uganda (NITA-U)

Princess Shamirah Kimbugwe - Founder, Pivot Payments

She is a founder and managing director of Pivot Payments Limited, one of the few female founded financial technology companies in Uganda.

Kimbugwe holds a Bachelor’s of Laws degree from Makerere University and a certificate in Intellectual property from – World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO).

She also has a Masters degree in Digital Finance and has several certificates from Uganda Bankers Association.

After graduating with a law degree, the soft spoken Kimbugwe decided to pursue a different direction – financial technology. A career that was not much appreciated by her family- most of whom felt it was related to network marketing.

Her journey to start Pivot Payments was sparked by the desire to have more women lead in the software and fintech space leveraging on technology to build affordable digital solutions for the rural poor, unbanked and underbanked people.

Kimbugwe’s ambition is to make the company a Pan African Neo Bank- simply put, a digital bank using apps and online platforms to support its customers without any physical branches!

The company has evolved from its Tumia Pesa retail brand into Pivotpay – a payments processing platform with presence in six markets across the African continent.

Through its mobile App, Pivotpay, the company is currently focused on providing financial services to the export labour force living in the United Arab Eimirates for users who have typically been financially exploited or excluded.

Pivotpay currently serves more than 40,000 users and has processed more than one million transactions within its two years of operation. Before starting Pivot Payments, the fintech guru amassed over 13 years’ experience and rose through the ranks in various organisations.  She served most recently as the country director at Cellulant Uganda, a subsidiary of Cellulant Corporation based in Kenya, and also a business development manager for True African Uganda and Kenya.

She is reputed for developing the PayLeo brand.

Susan Mugyenyi Ataremwa, Founder- Funa Ride.

She’s a Business Computing graduate who majored in Database management and has been in the tech space for 9 years so far.

Mugenyi has worked mainly as an account manager with top internet solutions providers such as SimbaNET Uganda and Datanet Uganda to sell Internet, data, cloud and IT security services to top companies.

She’s now a techprenuer who has invested in a ride hailing business - which has seen an explosive growth across the globe in the last decade growing on the back of high smartphone usage and Internet.

Mugenyi established Funaride, a car sharing or pooling App that connects drivers and passengers in the same area code heading to the same direction that has been around for two years.

Inspiration

Her inspiration to start Funaride App was rooted from a Ugandan culture of giving rides to family, friends and acquaintances in areas heading to the same direction.

She has seen many people get stranded on stages during peak hours and festive seasons, and therefore decided to create an App where both the drivers and passenger’s information will be available lessening the risk that comes with strangers being in the same vehicle especially for women.  

Mugenyi’s ride hailing application has grown to 2,000 subscribers and has made hundreds of trips.

She observes the perception of Ugandans towards ride hailing apps is still skeptical, but many are slowly embracing the technology with high smartphone usage to escape the inconveniences in using public transport.

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