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Senate deliberates on Draft Data Protection Regulations

Deliberations on data protection regulations by the Senate Standing Committee on Information and Technology with the Ministry of ICT, Innovation and Youth Affairs which kicked off in Mombasa on Wednesday come to a close today.

The taskforce is headed by the chairperson of the Senate Committee on ICT Senator Gideon Moi and Principal Secretary Ministry of Information communications Technology, Innovation and Youth Affairs, State department of ICT and Innovation Mr. Jerome Ochieng.

The forum sets the stage for the stakeholders by gathering to discuss the draft data protection regulations, draft national addressing system policy and bill, to deliberate over county ICT forums and the critical Infrastructure bill with a focus on telecommunication and technology infrastructure.

While giving his opening remarks, Senator Gideon Moi said that the process the team was undertaking would help operationalize the Act through the regulations considered after the forum.

“As we deliberate on the drafts, we hope to see in the comprehensive proposals that have been developed with the considerations of all relevant stakeholders,” said Moi.

On the National Addressing System, the Senator said that the system had been in development since 2015 when the first proposals were first put forward. He said in light of the growth of e-commerce and the convenience economy, there was a need to adapt and to remain competitive.

“We are keen to see a draft policy and Bill that will bring the whole country into the fold of e-commerce and help to stir up the growth of businesses in counties far and near,” he added.

Moi said the committee is working towards ensuring full connectivity across the country.

He mentioned that achieving nation-wide connectivity is but the first step in the larger goal of using technology to spur economic growth and enable the efficient delivery of services by the national and county governments.

“Achieving this will require concerted efforts. It will call for innovative ways to collaborate and therefore we will be sharing ideas on the county ICT forums,” he noted.

Principal Secretary Department of ICT and Innovation, Jerome Ochieng, said that the national addresses at the forum were essential for socio-economic development as they allowed people to be connected to the formal economy thereby having access to a host of commercial and social products and services.

“Despite the obvious benefits, the majority of Kenyans do not have a formal address. Kenya’s National Addressing System is therefore aimed at solving this problem by ensuring that a comprehensive system of property location, numbering, mapping, and all associated processes are put in place,” said the PS.

Ochieng added that through the National Addressing System policy, the State Department and Ministry is committed to creating an enabling environment for the ICT sector to thrive and ensure creation of over 200,000 jobs and contribute to up-to 10 percent of the country’s GDP as projected in Kenya’s Vision 2030.

By Chari Suche

 

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