WEEKLY REVIEW OF COMMISSION ENGAGMENTS ENDING 30TH OCTOBER 2020

Uganda Communications Commission (UCC) had the following engagements during the week ending 30th October 2020;

UPU Exceptional Council of Administration – October 26th

Uganda, as one of the members of the Universal Postal Union Council of Administration, participated in the virtual Exceptional Session of the Council. The Exceptional CA took place virtually with a broad agenda of agreeing on the way forward in light of the postponement of the 27th UPU Congress; that had implications on the leadership and operations of the UPU secretariat as well as the global postal strategy in the interim.

Outcomes of the Exceptional CA included; upholding the host country as Cote de Voire and ensuring that the CA is rescheduled to a date not later than August 2021.

Note that Uganda became a member of the Universal Postal Union (UPU) in 1901, and is currently serving a second four-year term on the agency’s Council of Administration (2012-2016 and 2016-2020). The UPU’s key role is to maintain a global postal territory and to establish rules for international mail exchange among member states. The agency also provides capacity building support aimed at transforming the entire mail supply chain – from the acceptance, through sorting and finally to delivery.

EACO WTSA-20 Preparatory meeting – October 26th

The Commission participated in an online East African Communications (EACO) sub-regional meeting on the preparations for the upcoming World Telecommunication Standardization Assembly (WTSA-20).  The meeting continued with reviewing and harmonising the East African positions that will form part of the African Position to WTSA 20.

Why the World Telecommunication Standardization Assembly (WTSA)?  WTSA is held every four years and defines the next period of study for ITU-T. WTSA-20 will take place in ​Hyderabad, India, 23rd February to 5th March 2021​ preceded by the Global Standards Symposium on 22nd February 2021. It sets the agenda of the International Telecommunications Union –  Standardisation Sector (ITU – T).

Telecommunications standards are necessary to facilitate global communications by ensuring that whether we exchange voice, video or data messages, different countries’ ICT networks and devices are speaking the same language. Therefore to generate common positions on critical issues ahead of every WTSA, regional preparatory meetings are held across the world.

Child Online Protection – October 26th – 30th

ITU launched four sets of the 2020 Child Online Protection (COP) Guidelines.  These were accompanied by training for parents, educators, industry and policymakers to work together and reinforce the online safety of children and youth; without suffocating their innovation and explorative limits and opportunities of being online. Key objectives include; Identifying risks and vulnerabilities to children in cyberspace; creating awareness; developing practical tools to help minimise risks; sharing knowledge and experience.

Read more about the four sets of the 2020 Child Online Protection (COP) Guidelines, find relevant additional information targeting childrenparents and educators, industry and policy-makers and browse through further resources.  

Training workshop of the Women Persons with Disabilities – October 26th – 27th & 29th – 30th

The Commission, represented by the Rural Communications Development Fund in conjunction with the National Union of Women with Disabilities of Uganda (NUWODU) a women-led Disabled People’s Organization conducted digital literacy training sessions in Iganga and Mukono for the Eastern and Central Regions, respectively. This programme is aimed at promoting the adoption and utilisation of ICTs, especially computers, printers and assistive technologies by Girls and Women with Disabilities (GWWDs) to enable them to participate in all aspects of social life on equal terms with their able-bodied counterparts.

The NUWODU partnership will last 3 years and will entail equipping digital skills of women in the northern, eastern, central and western regions of the country.  The project is as a result of a nationwide research study by the Commission on the access and usage of ICTs by Persons with Disabilities (PWDs) which revealed a dismally low usage, access and affordability of ICT products and services by all.

3rd ATU Task Group on Spectrum Recommendations – October 28th – 30th

ATU in collaboration with Ericsson Africa, undertook a project to look into the development of the toolkits that will be driven by the ATU Member States through their African spectrum management experts with the technical support and or input of the private sector.  The Project among other things seeks to harmonise national broadband spectrum plans including licensing roadmaps, Emerging and future spectrum management, e.g. spectrum trading and sharing, Spectrum licensing, Spectrum reframing and migration and Audits

Workshop on Affordable Internet Access and Meaningful Connectivity – October 28th

The Commission participated in decision markers e-workshop on affordable internet access and meaningful connectivity. This e-workshop was organised by Smart Africa, facilitated by the Alliance for Affordable Internet (A4AI). The workshop primarily targeted members of Smart Africa’s Council or regulators (CAR) and aimed at addressing the state of internet connectivity in the member countries and what can be done in the short and long term to address the challenges to bring affordable and meaningful internet access for all during this COVID-19 crisis and beyond.

Relatedly, the Web Foundation, working with Uganda Communications Commission and Women’s Rights Online Network produced a report on Women’s Rights Online: Closing the gender gap for a more equal world! The global report was conducted across 4 countries including Ghana, Columbia, Indonesia and Uganda. We have been working together to improve the status of women in the digital economy in Uganda – specifically working to ensure women’s rights online are protected, upheld and promoted in the digital space just as it should be in the offline environment.

Databank Training – October 28th – 29th

The Commission participated in the EACO databank training. This was done to follow up on the Country’s submissions on first to the fourth Quarter of 2019-2020 data submissions by each Member State as well as discuss the feasibility of data collection for each of the indicators.

National Intellectual Property Policy workshop – October 29th

The Commission participated in the National Intellectual Property Policy workshop for Stakeholders to provide the necessary guidance to the implementation of the Policy. The National Taskforce in the IP policy intended to bring the subject to the forefront with all the other government agencies and ministries that shall be expected to implement the Policy.

ITU Security Lad testing for Digital Financial Services

ITU-T under the Financial Inclusion Global Initiative (FIGI) has developed a security lab for testing the security of Digital Financial services application that is based on USSD, TK and Android.

The objective of the lab is to investigate and test the security of DFS applications operating on USSD and STK, investigate and test the security of Android DFS applications and provide the developer tools for strong authentication using FIDO. The aim is to see the possibility of using such resources to test the security of Mobile Money and other applications for improved security.

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