I will retire to my farm, former ICT Cabinet Secretary Joe Mucheru says
What you need to know:
- Mr Mucheru congratulated his successor CS Eliud Owalo and offered his unwavering support.
- While handing over the docket on Friday, Mucheru reflected on his time in the Ministry saying he had left it with a strong foundation that Mr Owalo steer forward.
- Mucheru however cautioned Mr Owalo that not all social media engagements would be positive.
Former Cabinet Secretary Joe Mucheru has said he will retire to his farm after leaving the Ministry of Information Communications Technology.
Mr Mucheru congratulated his successor CS Eliud Owalo and offered his unwavering support.
“I am also available for any consultation. I may be spending time on my farm more than in other areas, but I think there is a good network there so we can be able to communicate,” he said.
While handing over the docket on Friday, Mucheru reflected on his time in the Ministry saying he had left it with a strong foundation that Mr Owalo steer forward.
“I think this is arguably one of the best ministries in the country and I am very proud to have served in this role. When we started I started in 2015 we had about 70,000 young people working online, today the number is at over two million and it should grow to 15 million,” he said.
He also noted that 99.96 per cent of the polling stations were able to successfully transmit their results in the last election.
“I joined when we had 78 per cent 3G coverage in the country and for me, 99.96 is a pass with distinction,” he added.
He said the docket was fully connected with the citizenry and engages with the young people who are the majority in the country.
Mucheru however cautioned Mr Owalo that not all social media engagements would be positive.
The former CS also thanked the Chief Administrative Secretaries, CEOs and the Heads of Departments under the ICT ministry for their service to Kenyans during his tenure.
Mr Owalo said that he will pursue a powered and rich digital society.
To achieve this, Mr Owalo indicated that he would leverage technology for job creation and the generation of wealth.
“My plan is to create a mass of digital jobs for the youth through the launch of talent incubation and growth programmes, as well as ensuring that technological drivers and devices are available and affordable. This will kick off with the distribution of 23,000 virtual desktop devices in TVETs in Kenya plus schools,” he said.
The CS added that the completion of the Konza Technopolis project was a key priority that he will focus on to create more jobs.
Mr Owalo indicated that he would be keen on creating an efficient, user-friendly paperless economy and focus on the digitisation of government services and records.
The CS also revealed that a digital superhighway which would roll out an additional 100,000 kilometres of the national fibre optic network across the country would soon be launched.
This he said, was in line with the government's commitment to universal broadband availability over the next five years.
The CS pledged to facilitate a structured framework for government communication by establishing a contact centre with a portal through which Kenyans can liaise with the Ministry and raise their concerns across the entire government infrastructure.
He added that he is keen on fast-tracking the enactment of the Kenya Technopolis Bill, The ICT Authority Bill and the Public Relations and Communications Management Bill among others to facilitate the efficient delivery of government services to Kenyans.
Mr Owalo also pledged to safeguard information privacy.
“The government has invested in the National Data Centre and established the Office of the Data Commissioner. Data protection laws need to be implemented to ensure that we know what data the government has and where it is hosted. We also need to ensure that hosting is compliant with the existing regulations,” he said.
Mr Owalo thanked former CS Mucheru for his outstanding service and promised to engage relevant stakeholders to put Kenya at the centre of the fourth Industrial Revolution.