Ghana to host stakeholder forum *To discuss internet governance issues


KEY stakeholders in the internet industry in Ghana will from Wednesday, July 10 to Thursday, July10, 2019 meet in Accra to dialogue on policy framework on internet governance in order to ensure sanity on the usage of the internet in Ghana.


The multi-sectoral stakeholder forum is expected to bring together all major stakeholders in the internet governance to debate whether they represent governments, the private sector or civil society on equal basis through an open and inclusive process.


At a press conference in Accra last week, the Ghana Internet Governance Forum (IGF) Coordinator, Nana Kofi Asafu-Aidoo, indicated that the subject for discussion was on key issues in the local context including privacy, security, cyber security, access, infrastructure, net neutrality amongst others.


Experts, he noted, would speak on issues of internet freedom and digital rights, connecting the next billion, connectivity issues, security, safety and stability and emerging technologies for sustainable development.


According to him, internet was evolving and changing at a very fast pace, therefore, Ghana can’t be left out on key discussion while the Europeans make laws which would be binding on her as a nation.


He further noted that internet was not built by a single person but a community-oriented thing.


To this end, he said it would be important for all the stakeholders in the internet business whether academia, advertising to be in attendance to contribute their ideas, use of the internet in relation to our culture and tradition to produce modalities for the proper use of the internet in the local environment.


According to him, discussions at the conference would pave way for a better internet access, infrastructure and use with the ongoing discussion on the upcoming 5G network.


He asserted that the establishment of the IGF was formally announced by the United Nations Secretary-General in July 2006, and was first convened in October 2006, and has been held on an annual basis since then.


He further noted that the United Nations published its endorsement of a five-year mandate for the IGF in April 2006.


He said the Athens, Greece 2006, Rio de Janiero, Brazil in 2007, Hyderabad, India in 2008, Sham el Sheik, Egypt in 2009, and Vilnius, Lithuania in 2010 with the mandate being twice renewed in 2010 and 2015.


He said the IGF and West Africa IGF were convened annually to contribute the Africa perspective to the global debate on internet governance.


He added that the establishment of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) with particular focus on the management of domain names, Internet Protocol numbers and security and stability of the Internet.


This year’s IGF is organised on the theme: “Future of Work” while the theme for the main IGF is: “Digital communities: The Role of Stakeholders In Sustainable Development.”


Making a statement on behalf of the Executive Director of Media Foundation for West Africa (MFWA), Madam Felicia Anthonio indicated that the internet and social media platforms together with other digitalisation tools have become an integral part of the activities of humanity therefore there was the need to hold and sustain dialogues and engagements aimed at improving and associate platforms.


A role, according to her, was been championed by her outfit in advancing freedom of expression and the rights of Journalists, activists, bloggers, individuals among others in the offline and online space across West Africa.


The statement, therefore, called on all stakeholders to rally behind their outfit to support the awareness creation on the proper use of the Internet to ensure safety and harmony.


Story: Prosper Kwaku SALASSY

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