Information and communication technologies (ICTs) are the way forward for every country, says His Excellency (H.E.) Cooper W. Kruah, Liberia’s Minister of Posts and Telecommunications.
During an interview held at the ITU Plenipotentiary Conference 2018 in Dubai, he said: “No real development can be carried out by a nation right now in the absence of ICT. The programs and resolutions of ITU should be respected and enforced by all of the Member States.”
Liberia has recently launched an e-government programme which includes e-agriculture and e-education, he said. Payments for all government institutions, including the education system, can be done online in Liberia. “It is much smoother than when you were standing in line physically to pay money. All you have to do is grab your telephone and then you can just pay up, so I think we are on the right trajectory,” explained Kruah.
Liberia is also building the necessary infrastructure to bring connectivity to everyone.
“We were lucky that the Europe-to-Africa cable landed in our capital city, and through the assistance of [the United States Agency for International Development], and the World Bank …we are now building a fibre ring around Monrovia, the capital city,” he said. “We’d like to see that connectivity not only in Monrovia, but we have 15 political subdivisions; we are now working on our funding to extend the backbone [of Internet connectivity] to all the political subdivisions.”
He also spoke of the need for assistance for developing countries to improve their ICT infrastructure and programs.
“A lot of countries that want to … implement e-programmes may not have the financial capability to do. So maybe we can look for some fellowships for those countries,” said Kruah. “I think the ITU should … make sure that some funds are allocated for poor or developing countries that really want to follow up, but may not have the financing.”