- Veröffentlicht: 07. August 2018
Government institutions in Zimbabwe continue to lag behind in using ICTs and the Internet for public services to the citizens.
According to a survey ‘Transparency Assessment’ by media watchdog Misa Zimbabwe last year, the Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education and the Public Service Commission were the most secretive state departments.
“For the second year running, the Primary and Secondary Education ministry was the most secretive institution with a total score of six points. The ministry did not respond to written requests for information and the website remains badly managed,” Misa-Zimbabwe stated.
Against this background, citizens who spoke to Radio VOP felt there was the need for government to utilise ICTs and internet fully to ease the red-tape people are now accustomed to when dealing with public bodies.
Taranyadzwa Muwoni (22) who recently got a teaching job said it was a ‘tedious’ application that he felt should not be endured in this age.
“Applying for a job in the public service is quite a process. The PSC(Public Service Commission) need 3 copies on each document(ID, birth certificates, academic certificates and diploma) which you have to hand in physically.
“I was coming from rural Chihota imagine I had to secure accommodation overnight to be able to go through this process when if the government had adopted ICTs fully I should have just emailed scanned copies and it’s done,” he said.
Acquiring birth certificates can be energy-sapping and time consuming in Zimbabwe with internet services readily available, according to Martha Chavhanga.
“When I went to process my daughter’s birth-certificate at Market Square Registrar’s Office I was told to wait for 3 weeks because they wanted to confirm details with Mpilo Hospital where my daughter was born.
“I couldn’t imagine that when the simplest thing they should have done was just emailing each other or even use WhatsApp to get all the confirmation details,” argued Martha.
A student at Glen Norah High 1 said while his school has a computer lab, the ministry should ensure schools have adequate computers and are updated with the anti-virus plus latest software.
“At my school we have access to the computer lab but students have to scramble for the few working ones as most of them are now malfunctioning because of virus and that the software they use are not up-to-date,” said the 19-year-old Talkmore Simbi.
Civic organisations like Media Centre in Harare are capacitating journalists with Data Journalism in which the scribes are taught on how to sift through analysing figures and statistics to pen stories which focus on public interest.
However, one journalist said while the training is relevant it may go to waste if government departments continue to deny key information to the media and the public.
“The training has been awesome but we still need to have government departments being proactive in releasing information otherwise most of the time we revert to unethical ways of getting the information,” said Wiseman Nyika who attended a Data Journalism training facilitated by the Media Centre Zimbabwe.
The ministry of ICTs and courier services has been rolling out Information Communication Centres in rural areas but this is not yet adequate to bridge the gap of access between the urban and rural folk. Connectivity in rural areas of Zimbabwe still lags behind.
Autor(en)/Author(s): Tafadzwa Muranganwa
Quelle/Source: RadioVop, 31.07.2018