GASABO - The Rwanda Information Technology Authority (RITA), yesterday launched the country’s first ever national awards of excellence in Information and Communication Technology (ICT) to encourage more private investments for a knowledge-based economy.
The awards dubbed “Intego Awards” will be given out annually to the country’s best ICT promoters in 16 different domains starting from the end of next month. There are over 141 companies dealing in telecommunications and ICT services in the country.
Those that will come top in mainstreaming information technology into their activities will win the introduced excellence awards and subsequently earn RITA’s assistance, training and sponsorship.
“The message we want to convey is that there is potential and opportunity in IT. We want the market in Rwanda to get excited about ICT,” said the Executive Director of RITA, Nkubito Bakuramutsa, after launching the awards programme at Telecom House.
The ceremony was attended by various people from both the private and public sectors. Though both public and private companies will compete, top administration of the government’s IT agency made it clear that private initiatives are the most targeted.
“The private sector is at the very core of these awards,” said Emmanuel Hategeka, Chairman of RITA’s Board of Directors and Executive Secretary of the Private Sector Federation (PSF).
The selection of award winners will be conducted by both the general public through internet and special judges selected from different institutions and companies.
RITA is implementing161 projects through the country’s information and communication technology policy.
“I believe it is going to encourage the private sector to always work for the best. This will improve competition and the quality of services on the local market,” said Johnny Kayihura from Rock-Global Consulting, a local company that deals in IT infrastructure.
According to officials from the agency, the ICT excellence awards will become a regional and continental initiative as RITA gets experience into their pragamming,