Rwanda is eyeing a seat on the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) Council this year but the decision will first be endorsed by Cabinet, The New Times has learnt.
Rwanda has been a member of the ITU since 1962 but has not managed to acquire a seat within the elected Council for years.
ITU Membership represents a cross-section of the telecommunications and information technology industry, from the world’s largest manufacturers and carriers to small, innovative new players working in new fields like IP networking.
Abraham Makuza, whose duties include following up this membership bid in the Ministry of Information Communication Technology (ICT), says that though the government has been holding talks to that effect, an update on the government’s interest would be announced by the Cabinet.
“There have been talks about joining the ITU Council but the decision will be taken by the Cabinet. We have to wait and see,” he said
If Rwanda wins the seat this year, it will be the third East African country after Tanzania and Kenya to join the prestigious Council.
The other African countries that are already members of the Council are Algeria, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Egypt, Ghana, Mali, Morocco, Nigeria, Senegal, South Africa, and Tunisia.
The Council comprises a maximum of 25 percent of the total number of Member States, which are elected by the Conference with due regard to the need for equitable distribution of Council seats among the five world regions (Americas, Western Europe, Eastern Europe, Africa, Asia, and Australasia). The current Council is comprised of 46 members.
ITU is the leading United Nations agency for information and communication technology issues, and the global focal point for governments and the private sector in developing networks and services.