We spent the day today at the eTech Africa conference that is being held alongside the week long tech company exhibitions in Harare. This was the first of the two day conference where business leaders, techies, academic and politicians will make presentations on the theme “Exploiting the potential of ICTs for sustainable socio-economic transformation”.
Most of the presentations were the kind that make you want such discussion to happen more often. There’s a wealth of knowledge to be shared and to help and enable entrepreneurs and general participants in tech to take up existing opportunities as well as connect to individuals for collaboration.
Surprisingly, the day also had a healthy dose of frank talk on the state of the ICT industry in Zim. A presenter from Westchase Consultants, MK Ndlovu, spoke frankly about the state of tertiary education in Zimbabwe in terms of its lack of relevance to the fast paced developments in ICTs. He also pointed out a growing and worrying culture of corruption, large enterprises that don’t pay local vendors, tribalism and other ills in the economy. The truth that we all need to hear and start fixing.
Other speakers on topics such as ICTs in education, in health and in the tourism sector also provided insightful discussion. Overall, we had a great time today and we’re looking forward to tomorrow’s segment of the conference. If you’ll be there tomorrow, then we’ll see you there.
Here are some of the topics that were presented today, and the presenters;
- Building a vibrant ICT Industry (Mk Ndlovu , Westchase Consultants)
- ICTs in tourism and Entertainment (Nyambo, University of Zimbabwe)
- e-Government and national development ( 23rd Century Systems)
- ICTs in Education (Dr. Gary Brooking, University of Zimbabwe)
- ICTs in Health (Dr. Simbini, University of Zimbabwe)
And here are some pictures we took at the conference;