Uganda: Affordable Internet, e-services… the regional telecom infrastructure program ends with various successes

Top Stories

Five years ago, the World Bank made a commitment to financially support the Ugandan government in the acquisition of quality telecom infrastructure. With more than half a billion dollars in financing disbursed, the country has equipped itself with technical means for the digital economy.

The Government of Uganda, through the National Information Technology Authority (NITA-U), has welcomed the many achievements of the Regional Communications Infrastructure Program (RCIP) which comes to an end on August 16 next.

During a press conference, organized on Wednesday June 29 in Kampala, Hatwib Mugasa (photo), the executive director of NITA-U, revealed some of the successes registered by this initiative, in particular the improvement of the Internet access thanks to the 1,606 km of the national fiber optic network, the 300 Wi-Fi points deployed throughout the main cities of the country. There is also the dematerialization of public services, the implementation of digital identification and electronic signature services (Ug-Pass).

Hatwib Mugasa says that in five years, CHIN has a 100% completion rate on all of its components. According to him, it is thanks to this program that the government was able to reduce its expenditure in international data capacities. The state's monthly bandwidth bill has gone from $300 per megabit per second (Mbps) in 2016 to $70 today. It revealed that a total of 725 government ministries, departments and agencies, as well as local government sites and target user groups have been able to be connected to the national fiber optic network.

CHIN was launched in 2016 in Uganda. It was financed to the tune of $775 million by the World Bank with several objectives, including the improvement of Internet access, the implementation of an environment conducive to e-government.

With the successes achieved over the past five years, Uganda has equipped itself with the means to begin its digital transformation. Today, the government can offer people several innovative services, including e-health, distance education, online tax payment and many others. 

Samira Njoya