Sunday, March 26

International Telecommunication Union Study Forum Opens –

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By Kebba Ansu Manneh

International Telecommunication Union Study Group on sharing collective values identifies priorities and mutually reap the benefits of operators within the African continent forum opened in The Gambia on Monday.

Hosted by Gambia, Public Utilities Regulatory Authority (PURA) the three days forum brought together 12 regional telecommunication stakeholders of the African continent as well as officials of the ITU and is hosted under the theme: “Sharing Experience to Enhance Telecoms Networks Quality for Consumers”.

Mr. Yusupha M. Jobe, Director General PURA stated that the forum is meant to offer sharing of valuable country-specific case studies and practical models towards a buoyant enhancement of standards of performance with Quality-of-Service (QoS) and Quality-of-Experience (QoE).

 He noted that the Banjul meeting is designed to encourage African countries to promote and adopt the would-be recommendations on QoS and QoE.

According to him, the fundamental hallmark of the Banjul meeting is to encourage African countries to promote and adopt the would-be recommendations for Quality-of-Service and Quality-of-Experience. Intriguingly, while calling on participants to propose viable solutions as to how to curb the identified challenges in the sector for proper measures to be employed for a lasting solution.

DG Jobe observed that PURA as a partner to ITU is equally prudent to meet periodically in a bid to bolster and re-enforce the available opportunities in the industry to merge the top-notch services offered elsewhere.

He noted that this is possible when individually and collectively consider and leverage the sea of potential available in the industry.

 Martin Adolph, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of ITU stated that the Banjul forum brought together prominent experts in the field of the Telecommunications industry who without a doubt will share their valuable skills and experiences with participants.

 He added that it will also create a platform for ITU members to share a common platform and harness skills and experiences that will go a long way in making life better for African countries.

  “Meaningful quality service delivery demands IT providers to always perform the unexpected especially when consumers need them the most.  Reliable connectivity is key to trust in the ITC sector and can go a long way in creating a better life for the people benefitting from the services.

   The main goals of the ITU are to ensure universal connectivity with affordable and secured ITC, adding that sustainable digital transformation is the second goal of ITU that vows to foster connectivity that is designed to empower the people through sustainable ITC development,” he said.

 Lamin Camara, Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Communication and Digital Economy noted that observing standards is paramount to the ITC world as the continent embraces digitalization, adding that the three days event will help the participants hone their skills and experience thus ensuring that standards governing the industry are not compromised.

 According to him, consumers play a pivotal role in determining the quality of services offered by operators of the telecommunication industry, noting that consumer feedbacks, regulatory actions, and operator performance are also critical in ascertaining Quality-of-Service (QoS) and Quality-of-Experience (QoE) that every operator must heed to.

 He reiterated that the decision of the Gambian Government to decouple the Information and Communication ministry into two line ministries is geared towards harnessing the benefits of the digital economy.

  “Since then the government has been working hand in glove with all stakeholders in achieving the set-aside aims and objectives.  Effective communication requires the participation of all stakeholders including operators, operators must be willing to invest more in the sector if the requisite results have to be achieved in the country.