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Over 45 government agencies have already put information online and according to NITA most foreigners coming to Uganda were now using the portal to apply for Visa and work permits.

National Information Technology Authority (NITA) has called on the public to utilize government services online giving assurance of data safety.

The director E-Government services, Peter Kahiigi, said some citizens were being held back by the concerns about the safety of their personal data before seeking services online.

Through NITA mandated by NITA-U Act 2009, Uganda Government has since established an E-Government Portal which is www.gou.go.ug.

The portal hosts all the information from government ministries, departments and agencies posted online and people can seek services such as passport, visa, and construction permit applications, taxation among other services online.

Over 45 government agencies have already put information online and according to NITA most foreigners coming to Uganda were now using the portal to apply for Visa and wohttp://www.ifg.cc/administrator/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&layout=edit&id=56968#rk permits.

Addressing journalists shortly after the launch of NITA E-Government Excellence Awards under the theme, “Bold digital government; unlocking service delivery” at Skyz Hotel in Kampala on Tuesday, Kahiigi said there was an effective legal framework in place for data protection.

Recently, the government enacted a law on data protection to safeguard Ugandans from data misuse. On the issue of integrity on the people who handle the information, Computer Misuse Act is there. You will be prosecuted and jailed if you are convicted of data misuse.

“The intention of the awards is to recognize government institutions that have done an excellent job in taking their government services near the people,” Kahiigi said.

NITA, in a press statement signed by NITA-U executive director, James Saka, announced a month-long celebration during the month of June.

They will organise an expo for government services held from June 20-21 at Garden City rooftop followed by an awards ceremony on June 27, 2019.

“We want to encourage government agencies that have taken government services online. But we also want to encourage those who are still lagging behind to pull up their socks because the citizens are demanding good and effective services,” he said.

According to NITA, by the end of five years, Ugandans will be able to access all government service information on the phone.

The system, NITA said has improved the livelihoods of citizens because they are spending little time going to government offices and has saved the government money in terms of limiting printing among others.

“In this year alone, the system has saved citizens 66 million working hours through seeking for government services through their phones,” Kahiigi revealed.

According to the United Nations (UN) E-government survey of 2018, Uganda’s online service index improved from 50% in 2016 to 57% in 2018, which puts the country in the high online service index bracket.

The survey also indicated that Uganda’s E-Government development index(EGDI) improved from 36% in 2016 to 41% in 2018 which is above the African average of34% adding that Uganda is currently ranked number one in Africa in cybersecurity by the global national cybersecurity index.

NITA, director technical services and in charge of the National Backbone Infrastructure Project, Vivian Ddambya said, Internet will spread across the country.

“Currently, we have laid fibre optic cable in the country. We have about 3000 kilometers laid, about 500 government locations connected. We are laying another 1000 kilometers. Internet will spread across the country. Internet prices have since reduced from $190 a unit to $70 and next year, it will be at $50 with many agencies connected,” she said.

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Autor(en)/Author(s): Nelson Kiva

Quelle/Source: The New Vision, 29.05.2019

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