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Uganda to compete for ITU Council representation

Uganda to compete for ITU Council representation

Uganda has announced its candidature for a seat on the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) Council with elections scheduled to take place later this year at the organisation's Plenipotentiary Conference.

193 member states will elect 48 states to the next ITU Council, 13 of which will be from Africa, in addition to 12 members of the Radio Regulation Board.

Additionally, a new ITU management team will be chosen, including the next Secretary-General, Deputy Secretary-General and Directors of the Radio communication, Telecommunication Standardisation and Telecommunication Development Bureaux.

During a keynote address at the 19th Africa Telecommunications Union (ATU) council of administration hosted in Kampala recently, Uganda's Minister of ICT and National Guidance Frank Tumwebaze confirmed the country would compete for a place on the ITU Council - this after it narrowly missed out at the previous election in 2014 with only three votes.

"I wish to take this honour to inform you that the Government of Uganda will submit her candidature for election to the ITU Council representing Africa (Region D) for the period 2018-2022. The elections will take place at the forthcoming ITU Plenipotentiary conference which will be held in Dubai, United Arab Emirates in October/November 2018. I am, therefore, respectfully requesting for your support and that of your governments for Uganda's candidature."

The ATU Administrative Council Meeting included current ITU Council members Cameroon, South Africa, Kenya, Nigeria, and Ghana as well as Zambia and Côte d'Ivoire who are among those who failed to get elected to the ITU Council four years ago.

Tumwebaze also emphasised the importance of regional and international bodies on the communications landscape in Africa.

"These (platforms) have tremendously impacted on the way communication is being used in Africa. These regional initiatives aim to, among others, strengthen and harmonise policy and regulatory frameworks for integration and growth of the African Telecommunication/ICT market. Distinguished delegates, l would like therefore, to underscore the commitment of the government of Uganda to serve the continent at various levels with a view to establishing a vibrant continental information society."

Current ITU Secretary-General Houlin Zhao of China, who was elected with 152 votes out of the 152 countries which were present in 2014, could run for re-election for an additional four-year term at the Plenipotentiary Conference.

Abdoulkarim Soumaila, Secretary General of the ATU could not be reached for comment Uganda's candidature.

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