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Gov’t Rolls Out 25 New Websites

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While all districts including the new ones have been allocated district web domains (www.districtname.go.ug) only about half of them are actually operational.

The 25 new websites will bring the total number of functional ones to just 55 out of the total 111 districts.

Since 2003, most of the old district sites worked for the first few years and died out due to lack of administration, thereby creating a wide deficiency of credible sources of timely information for the public.

According to RICNet CEO, John Barugahara, the new sites have been designed to cater for contemporary cyber dynamics.

“We have included social media platforms like facebook, twitter and Youtube which are substantial in stimulating feedback from visitors,” he said.

Barugahara added that simpler tools were used in the development such that one does not any program but just the browser.

“Local administrators when trained will be able to update the websites themselves unlike in the past where piles of data in hardcopy would have to be transported to Kampala to be posted on the sites,” he said.

The sites also include e-library in which bulky information about district strategies, plans and programs will be accessed by the public; as well as the Bulk SMS option to assist administrators communicate with colleagues more easily about meetings schedules and other developments.

For matters of sustainability, he said that the sites would host adverts from private companies and more staff will be trained to constantly update them.

Chimpreports also learnt that Information Communication Commission is considering provision of translation of web information from English to four optional languages of Runyakitara, Luo, Swahili and Luganda.

In his speech at the launch at Hotel Africana on Friday presented by David Turahi from the ICT Ministry, Minister John Nasasira said that the new websites would enhance competence and strengthen social accountability.

He also revealed government plans to establish more Community Internet access points in various parts of the country in which the public can freely access wireless internet, adding the upcoming digital migration will help in transferring some of the excess broadband from television to telecommunication companies thereby increasing internet accessibility.

Citing Uganda as the country with the highest internet costs in the region, the minister highlighted a need for government to reduce on the costs of internet enabled gadgets like laptops tabs and smart phones as well as the general cost of internet by telecom companies.

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