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IGF 2020 - Day 6 - WS187 Open Data for Women and Persons with Disabilities

The following are the outputs of the real-time captioning taken during the virtual Fifteenth Annual Meeting of the Internet Governance Forum (IGF), from 2 to 17 November 2020. Although it is largely accurate, in some cases it may be incomplete or inaccurate due to inaudible passages or transcription errors. It is posted as an aid to understanding the proceedings at the event, but should not be treated as an authoritative record. 

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>> PEACE OLIVE AMUGE:  Hello, everyone.  Good morning, good afternoon, good evening from wherever you are joining here from.  Thank you very much for joining this session.  It is ‑‑ the sections is on open data for women and persons with disabilities.  We will give in some 3 minutes that we can have people joining this session.  Thank you very much.

>> RAYMOND MAMATTAH:  Hello, Raymond here.  Are we okay with that?

>> Yes.

>> PEACE OLIVE AMUGE:  What did you say, Raymond?

>> RAYMOND MAMATTAH:  We'll have to indicate the ground rules.

>> PEACE OLIVE AMUGE:  Will you host it again in the chat?

>> RAYMOND MAMATTAH:  Yes.  I will post it in the chat as well.

>> PEACE OLIVE AMUGE:  Okay.

>> RAYMOND MAMATTAH:  So good morning, good afternoon, good evening.  My name is Raymond Mamattah.  This is hosted under the IGF code of conduct and the UN rules and regulations.  In case you like to speak, you have to unmute yourself; however, if you are having problems, please indicate it in the chat and the support team will gladly unmute you.  If you are not peeking, kindly put your mic on mute.  Any other support that you need, kindly let us know.  Enjoy your session.  Thank you.

>> PEACE OLIVE AMUGE:  Thank you very much, Raymond.  Hello, everyone.  Good afternoon.  Good evening, good morning.  Thank you very much for dialing in today's session on open data for women and (inaudible) with disabilities.  In the chat, we will have the rules that will guide us and we will start right away.  We gave ourselves three minutes so that we can wait for other people joining N. we have a number of you.  My name is Peace Olive Amuge.  And I'm also a member of the working group of the IGF strengthening and strategy.  So I'm very happy to moderate this session.  We have great speakers today.  We will be discussing a number of issues and open data.  We will look at the overview of open data.  We will also look at how women access open data and how persons with disabilities access data and also we will look at some of the existing legal frameworks of open data in east Africa, region in the different countries of the east African region.  We will also then finally look at some of the recommendations that we can give to the different stakeholders to insure that women and persons with disabilities access open data.  And without wasting time, we'll speak ‑‑ we will go right straight to our first speaker who is Joan Katambi.  She's the assistant lecturer and communications technology.  Joan also is the founder of digital literacy initiative in Uganda.  Joan, we would like to hear from you.  Could you please give us an overview of open data?  What open data looks like in east Africa.  Please, Joan, take the mic.

>> JOAN KATAMBI:  Thank you so much, moderator, Peace, for that introduction.  In the receipt years, there's been a new receipt interest in open data.  Due to implementation of many initiatives and platforms to build capacity under data use and help improve decision and policy making across the different sectors in the east African region.  They open data movement in the area of access to public and other information is relatively new and very significant in the east African region states namely Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania and south Sudan.  It can be define as data which is made accessible and available in the standardized format and under (inaudible) that allows to you be reused and reshared.  According to the international open data chat, it is publicly available data that can be universally and readily accessed.  It could be used and redistributed free of charge.  It is data which is structured for usability and computerability.  In the several African countries, there appears to be a quality called will to open up government based data sets not only for increased transparency, but also to achieve the economic impacts, social critique and simulate innovation.  The rollover data intermediaries is crucial and has been sufficiently recognized in a lot of the African content.  Therefore, open data in Africa especially the east African region needs a vibrant, dynamic, open and (inaudible) data in the system if this is to make a real impact within our region.  Let's look at the examples of some of the open data initiatives in east Africa.  In Uganda, there are a number of initiatives being implemented by both public and Private Sector.  There's been a significant progress for example.  We do have the online publication of the national budget locations releases and other statistics called bulletins by the men effort are of finance among others.  In Kenya, they do have a code.  Kenya open data initiative that has met government deficits available to the public and is reusable formats with data from different categories across all sectors.  We also need to take note that Kenya has a strong and a long track record of open data in our region.  In south Sudan, they also do have a data initiative that has met their data sets available to the public and then is reusable formats from the different categories across all the sectors of the economy.  In Tanzania, an open data movement was initiated through the project in order to realize the benefits of open data.  So Tanzania has got a best statistics portal that provides data in a machine readable format to be used and reused by anybody.  The data produced is prioritized for education, water and health sectors only.  The government of Ghanda also recognizes creating value from open data, which requires data from the whole government.  They issue to all the departments to publicly available all the data for public consumption online and without charge and this has really been the best in their country in terms of information access at everyone.  In the (inaudible), and a bunch of open data was evoked by the (inaudible) press with an aim to provide an open and reusable database about you, and centralize or validate at.  Thank you so much, Peace, for now and over to you our moderator.

>> PEACE OLIVE AMUGE:  Thank you for taking us through the overview of the different data in the countries in east Africa.  Thank you for pulling out the different initiatives that these countries have.  I think when you mentioned this different initiatives, it takes us to the next speaker for us to know how women are accessing this data and how these initiatives are working in reality.  So our next speaker is Innocent ADRIKO.  Innocent has great interest in Internet policy and governance and he is also a member of the Uganda chapter.  He's also a member of the ICANN community and is also an Ambassador of the youth in the IGF 2019.  Innocent, you can please tell us how women have been able to access open data looking at what the different initiatives have been put across.  Innocent, please, could you take the mic?

>> INNOCENT ADRIKO:  Thank you, Peace.  Given the significance and value of open data, government data is accessible to everyone including our women at the right team and all times.  It is evident that most of the women in east Africa live in rural areas where digital inclusion has remained a challenge.  Coupled with a high cost of Internet in east Africa and connectivity challenges, the many parts of the region, promoting open data has proved to be a nightmare.  Where as a percentage of these women exist in Internet, it has remained like most of the women especially the ones in the rural areas.  (inaudible) basic mobile phones.  Therefore, it makes it impossible for you to talk about open data.  Mobile phones we do know they aid accessibility for these women, but the fact that they don't even have these mobile phones, it is impossible for them to access data platforms.  In addition, we do realize that many of these women are illiterate.  Therefore talking about open data before talking about literacy is actually inconsiderate.  This implies that government data needs to be recognized from English to their local languages, if they're accessed and understanding.  We do acknowledge that throughout east Africa, governments have been (inaudible) open data to meet transparency and accountability in governance.  eGovernment platforms, for example, public information access, centers and even libraries where citizens and all stakeholders can access government that have been established.  The government of Uganda is established the government interaction center and the ask government (inaudible).  This portals do exist and they are meant to provide specific governments data for citizens; however, it is evident that majority of the citizens are not even aware of these platforms and they're not aware they do exist.  I have experience from my request from the ask you government portal here in Uganda not being responded to.  This implies that the women deep in the rural areas and given those urban areas may not easily access the government data.  Besides, open data is not enough.  These women need to have the knowledge and open mindedness to reuse the (inaudible) and replicate the processes of open data.

In conclusion, champion open data in east Africa means that we should refocus on our priorities and this will give us the capacity these challenges in a localized way because these are localized problems.  Thank you, Peace.

>> PEACE OLIVE AMUGE:  Thank you very much, Innocent.  Thank you for pulling out and bringing out clearly the challenges that women face when it comes to accessing open data.  You talked about the literacy.  You talk about the challenges of internet access, you know, because if these women are not accessing Internet, then it is difficult for them to access the open data.  And then also you talk about the localization.  You also talk about the challenges and you give an example of when you applied to access information from the government and that was not done.  That means that if anyone is having a challenge with open data, thank you very much other Innocent.  I think it would be nice for us to hear from shamming to understand how open data is for persons with disabilities.  So Shamin is information and communications technology professional and she has vast experience in social communications.  She works for the national union for women of disabilities in Uganda.  This union is a women‑led organization.  Shamming, you can please tell us how accessing open data has been for persons with disabilities?  Thank you very much.  Take the mic, please.

>> SHAMIM NAMPIJA:  Thank you so much, please, for that wonderful introduction.  To give you an overview of what persons with disabilities are going through, it is widely acknowledged that persons with disabilities face special exclusion due to digital division and digital exclusion on the account of disability, gender, glass, location and privilege.  Yet several international human rights conversations such as the universal declaration of human rights, sustainable development and in Uganda access information (inaudible) Uganda (inaudible) 1995 on persons with disabilities in 2019 or recognize that access to communication technologies are not only human rights, but persons of empowerment and (inaudible) with disabilities.  To answer your question, according today, Uganda bureau statistic, 4.4 per (inaudible) persons with disabilities.  The largest population is in the rural areas.  Women more than men have the highest strength of disability in Uganda.  This reveals that a majority of persons access open data.  For those persons with disabilities that access that kind of access open data, their access is limited for the ability and access to ICP (inaudible) necessary to reach open data.  One needs (inaudible) or computer and several Internet connection or data which are (inaudible) and access from majority of persons with disabilities.  There's also the contradiction between access information (inaudible) and the Uganda constitution which leaves room for (inaudible) by providing open data.  The Uganda constitution and persons with disabilities in 2019 recognized sign language as a national language, but the access for information act does not recognize it as a medium (inaudible) for persons with disabilities.  Persons with disabilities in Uganda are denied access to information held by this space due to the states local resources to make it available in disability accessible formats.  For example, most of the government of this when Corona virus have been disseminated and bridge picked up for the hearing impaired.  When you come to the eGovernment website, they're not compliance with accessible known.  So thanks to speech tools, they become useful and often times options are view and hard to locate.  Also the language in this open data provision like national statistics is too technical for the (inaudible) with a disability to understand.  In conclusion, I would like to say that it is indisputable that the government of Uganda has (inaudible) to provide citizens with open data but a lot needs to be done to encourage persons with distant access open data on social inclusion.  Thank you so much.

>> PEACE OLIVE AMUGE:  Thank you very much, shamming.  Thank you for highlighting and putting out the picture of how open data is for persons with disabilities and you also mentioned different photos that do not have accessibility norms.  Thank you so much for pulling that out and also I would like to tell our dear participants that please let's use the chat and ask questions.  We will have at the end some time to have ‑‑ to listen to your questions, but also we can use the chat to bring out to send out the questions to our panelists.  As Shamim brought us to this, we have some challenges with different lows in Uganda.  It would be very nice for us to know some of the legal framework that exist in the east African region and to know a little bit about this legal framework, we will be speaking to Elain (inaudible) and engineering students at the technical University of Kenya.  She is also a mentor at the center much excellency.  An organization that leverages education to young girls living in the rural area.  We would like to hear from you what some of these legal frameworks exists in east Africa.  Please take the mic.

>> EILEEN:  Thank you, Peace, for the great introduction.  I would like to thank my fellow panelists for bringing out the various aspects on open data with regards to women and persons with disabilities.  So I will move to defining what open data according to me is.  Open data is data which is collected and shared with others to use as a way without restrictions and incorporate usage.  It should be legally open to with such restricted to any restrictive copyright.  Open data policies should then provide a framework on opening access to government data and also providing governance mechanism.  Policies have provided by the government should strive to highlight the requirements for a successful implementation of open data for all people including women and persons with disabilities.  This will quickly reduce the policy impediment and lead times with regards to the (inaudible).  So when it comes to existing legal frameworks across east African regions, (inaudible) have been one of the first African countries to launch an open data portal in July 2011.  It is governing open data and according to the center for public impact foundation, which was released in 2010, a new institution was qualified and it included access information.  This actual established gave an effect to qualified (inaudible) of the constitution with states that every citizen has a right to information handled by this and also have a right to information held by another person and required for the exercise or protection of any right or fundamental freedom.  And then when it comes to Uganda, Uganda grans access to information by the people and the perfect example is access to information source in 2005.  This exhibits put forward for government willingness to provide useful public information.  Accessing information does not guarantee an open data and with this, I mean open data shall be made publicly available and not sent to valid privacy or security or privilege limitation.  And also, this open data shall be timely meaning it shall be made available as quickly as possible in order to preserve the value of this data.  And then again, this open data shall be primary meaning that just as it has been collected, it shall be in that form and not in any other modified form.  The ministry of ICT Uganda has been developing an open data policy even though not much work has been there on the open data portal in insuring that all people including women and persons with disabilities are able to understand this data and also be able to interplace it.  When it comes to Veroundy, Nema is a Cloud base technology platform that make its accessible and delivers a tool and discoveries.  It is committed to protecting information of any visitor or individual or even entity that tries to (inaudible).  When you look at Uganda, it is said that freedom of the press and freedom of information are recognized and guaranteed by the state and also access to information which was enacted in 2013 said that every person has a right to access information held by government bodies or private bodies.  It is the duty of the government to collect information on behalf of the citizens and make it available for us to achieve an information society and acknowledge economy that is required.

And then in Tanzania, there is no policy on information yet and this you find that it has the access of this has made it inconvenient for those seeking information from the public.  Nonetheless, the government has made numerous attempts to make more information available.

Having looked at this existing legal framework of the close African region, we realize that open (inaudible) policies and for instance, women and persons with disabilities are underrepresented when it comes to data combination and implementation with a perception that they cannot choose tech and therefore, this is due to (inaudible) for various reasons.  And also this open data policy that are put in place or enacts, they're neutral.  Therefore, they do not collaborate on how women and persons of disabilities are able to access this data and also be able to interface it.  And then lastly, there's no update on (inaudible) low.  Therefore, hindering release on open data.

So in conclusion, I believe that (inaudible) upon having all east African countries come together to develop a framework on improving policy formulation coordination and implementation when enabling access and inclusion of women and persons with disabilities across the east African region.  Thank you so much.

>> PEACE OLIVE AMUGE:  Thank you very of, Eileen.  Thank you for taking us through the different frameworks the countries have.  I think it's very important we talk about it and also you pulled out some of the gaps that we have in this legal framework.  Thank you very much, Elaine.  And I mentioned before that let's use the chat.  We have the Q&A for the questions and the chat for the comments.  Please let's use this different spaces to Celt our mind.  We will go to Joan lastly and then we will open up the floor for questions so that we can hear from you as well.  And I think it is very important for us to talk about what are the different draws and different stakeholders play in insuring that women and persons with disabilities can access open data.  So Joan, could you please give us some of the rules that you think the different stakeholders play?  Please, Joan, please take the mic.

>> JOAN KATAMBI:  Thank you so much, Peace.  You can hear me?  Hello.  You can hear moo?

>> PEACE OLIVE AMUGE:  Yes, we can hear you, Joan.

>> JOAN KATAMBI:  Okay.  Thank you.  So thank you so much for the question and thanks for the great feedback from our panelists.  I will straight go to Civil Society organizations to insuring women and disabilities to access data 1.  Civil Society organizations need to run campaigns for open data in order to create awareness in all communities.  For effective campaigns of open data, Civil Society organizations need to work with data technologies, information professionals, information technologies, academia and ordinary citizens who advocate for greater access to government data.  Because whatever open data, whatever open data is coming out to the public, we the citizens are questioning our leaders on what has been done and what has to be done.  So more has to be done in regards to awareness in this initiative to Civil Society organizations also should follow collaborations and movements to work together and advocate for policies that are inclusive and (inaudible).  I will give an example in Uganda, we have the digital human rights lab in Uganda.  It is part of the project of human rights protection in the digital age, which is implemented by better place lab and future challenges by the GI (inaudible).  So this lab has created a number of community of practices and an example is ICT for advocate, access to information and services for minority groups, community of practice among others with the agenda to enhance access to data and information and one of their focus areas is still open data by women and persons with disabilities plus other vulnerable groups.  Back to our governments in the east Africa regions, our governments need to develop teams, strategies, action plans and policies in support of their commitments to open data.  This strategies should typically be high level plans focused on the particular long times actions and resources required for the access of open data initiatives while action plans and policies will define specific courses of action adopted in order to guide decisions to add implementation of this initiative.  Governments too should admit data to insure that data can be understood by sides especially women minority groups, persons with disabilities and it can be (inaudible) by such engines.  When I talk about open data, I mean data about data.  When you look at our data portals across the region, they specifically give you the figures.  There's even known data backing up to those figures for people to use and decision making.  Governments should also clearly communicate the data they hold and this has really been a question from time to time.  They should prioritize the data they do publish.  They need to make this open data permanently accessible and findable.  You have an example Innocent has given us for certain specific data and until now, he has never received any reply.  So they really need to come out with the public and tell us which data they hold and how should we the citizens be able to access it.  Governments also need to have standard formats for publishing this data.  So that our women and persons with disabilities are able to interpret.  I tell you, when you open this government platforms, they are all in a second language which (inaudible) (audio cutting in and out) women how they're able to interpret this and use it and even persons with disabilities.  So it is key they should look at the issue of the standard formats when it comes to publishing and we should be able to interpret it.  Another point is our governments should provide public data guidelines and standards for this open government data on access.  This is clear.  If you need for example, information on education sector, where should you run to?  If you find the platform, how do you get to understand the statistics that are actually online.  Another key issue is governments need to use standard open licenses and they should help citizens especially women and persons with disabilities to understand the legal context fast because people need to know.  If you use classified information from our governments, what are the copyrights?  What are the laws that are binding the information that you're trying to take up and redistribute.  Because it is known in the region.  The (inaudible) comes in when you make a mistake.  If they come in and create more Awareness to tell the public and citizens, here is the data.  Here is how it can be used or can be accessed, then we wouldn't have more problems within the data and the laws that we actually put in place.  Open data needs commitment from the political issue to be entrusted to educated and resourced custodian and embed all permanent data processes.  A persuasive culture within all relevant government institutions.  Thank you, Peace and over to you.

>> PEACE OLIVE AMUGE:  Thank you very much, Joan.  Thank you for the elaborate recommendation that you have given to the different stakeholders.  It is clear that we all have a role to play and I'm very happy that you pulled them all out clearly.  I think it's the right time that we listen to our dear participants in.  Chat, you will see Sandra.  Sandra is the program manager of women at Uganda network movement.  She has been giving us different links to information to some of the lows and some of the rights of speakers of mission.  You can have a look.  We also have Rebecca with the chat.  So we would like to open up the floor to our dear participants.  Please, you can raise your hand and you will take the mic or you can still use the question and answer session.  Please, we would like to hear from you if you have maybe a comment or if you have a question to one of the panelists or general questions to all of us, please we will be happy to hear from you.  I see in the chat, would you like to say something?  You can take the mic and say out.  You say the cyber (inaudible) communities is essential in my bias point of view.  Could you please take the mic?  Would you like to take the mic?  Sharing.  Do we have any hands up?  Raymond, could you please unmute Cheryl?  Raymond, could you please unmute Cheryl?

>> CHERYL LANGDON‑ORR:  Oh, hi.  Cheryl Langdon‑Orr.  I am thoroughly enjoying this dive into the work you have all done in terms of open daughter and access and how we need to empower our all communities so much more.  I like the term cyber savvy because we don't need to look just as a literacy point of view.  We need to look at a resilience and intelligence, a cleverness and observance, a whole lot of being aware, being cautious, being well informed in this whole cyberspace.  To better help women and, of course, people with disabilities but in fact, everyone to manage more effectively and more safely in our interactions.  So that's where I was getting with my couple of sentences.  Thank you.

>> PEACE OLIVE AMUGE:  Thank you very much, yes.  You're very right.  Thank you for bring that ‑‑ for bringing that out.  We still have some time before we close the session.  Take the mic before we do that.  Take the mic.  We still have some time, I mean.  Anybody has a hand up?  Yes.  We have a hand up.  Raymond, can you please unmute?

>> Hi.  Can you hear me?

>> PEACE OLIVE AMUGE:  Yes, we can.

>> I would like to congratulate you guys for a great session.  It's been very informative and especially learning about different open data initiatives across Africa or across eastern Africa.  And so I would like to thank Sandra on the chat who has shared the links that leads to all the open initiatives that is in the region.  So thank you very much.  For the DRC, (inaudible) speaking from the DRC.  We don't have any ‑‑ don't yet have any such initiative.  So I wanted to know to find out from different panelists how ‑‑ if you can share a bit of experience on how countries ‑‑ I mean, these countries (inaudible) how or what triggered the discussion, who is managing the process and what is the role of Civil Society in being part of this open data initiatives?  Thank you.

>> PEACE OLIVE AMUGE:  Thank you very much.  Thank you that you appreciate and thank you for joining.  Your questions Joan, would you like to take the question that was posed?  Joan, are you there?  If anyone else has a comment or a question, please you can still also take the mic as we wait for Joan to maybe give some more highlights on the questions that Arsene has posed.  Does anyone have something you would like to say?  Mary?  We have Mary unmuted, please, Raymond.  Mary, please take the Mike.

>> MARY UDUMA:  I want to thank you for putting up this very positive message.  Please pardon me.  The issue is do we know ‑‑ can we say the commitments from the stakeholders and what the commitment do from the stakeholders to be able to actualize open data and being able to communicate to those with disability and in particular, I'm interested in those with disabilities.  Within the region and within Africa region.  There are linkages and partnership and there are some collaborations at the African level and maybe I came in late when you were making your presentations, but I need to know the commitments and if not, what commitment what should we recommend that should be the commitment of each stakeholder to be able to actualize this.  Thank you.

>> PEACE OLIVE AMUGE:  Thank you very much, Mary.  We will take another question.  It is your hand.  I thought we had another hand.  And yes.  Shamim took us through how persons with disabilities accessing open data.  I did not know if Shamim would like to briefly tell us how the initiatives are working for you as Mary put it out their commitments and then she's asking if ‑‑ if there are commitments to those initiatives and making sure that persons with disabilities can access open data.  And we also still have in the chat, yes.  If anyone has a question, please you can raise your hand or you can take the mic.  We still have some minutes that we would like to listen from you.  We would like to hear from your experiences.  I know a number of you have interacted with this topic and probably you deal with this topic on a day to day.  So we would like to hear from you what are you experiences, what do you say about it?  What are some of the recommendations that you would want to put up for us.  So please, you can raise your hand or you can take the mic and also you can use the question and answer or use the chat.  We have a number of ways that you can reach out to us.  Someone is saying please there will be a (inaudible) after the session to leave feedback.  We are told that there will be a phone to leave feedback after.  Does anyone have a comment?  Yes, Joan.  You can take.

>> JOAN KATAMBI:  I thank you so much.  Having Internet issues.  I want to say thank you so much to our participants who are in the house and what prompted this initiative.  One is transparency and two accountability.  Usually this open data is available on (inaudible).  So open data brings about transparency which in turn brings about greater accountability of key actors leading them to making decisions that apply rules in the public interest.  Innovation and also economic development is part of the initiative.  So open data enables innovators to improve public services and also be able to build new products and services with social and economic value.  So open data usually shifts sudden decision making from this state into the market.  Inclusion and empowerment and also it tries to remove power imbalances that are resulted from metric information and it brings in new stakeholders in two policy debates giving marginalized groups a greater sake in the application of rules and policy.  Back to you, Mary.  Thank you so much for your, you know, joining us and highlighting and giving us some issues.  So in Africa, open data projects are often undertaken also to increase transparency and accountability especially with governments with signed the open government partnership and committed to open data as part of their action agenda.  So you also need to check out with DRSC.  If your country has also signed up to be part of this open government partnership and then there you will have much more information about it.  Over to you, Peace, and thank you.

>> PEACE OLIVE AMUGE:  Thank you very much, Joan.  I think we also have Shamim in the queue who would like to say something.  And still, we are open to more questions, to more comments, please, you are welcome.

>> SHAMIM NAMPIJA:  I would like to say the government has second initiative to actually skill persons with disabilities and literacy and technical skills.  So the government of Uganda is partnering with organizations of persons with disabilities to reach persons with disabilities and work with them in scales program.  It is being run by the Uganda communications commission, the government of Uganda.  Sorry.

[Laughter]

Communications of the government of Uganda.

>> PEACE OLIVE AMUGE:  Thank you very much for that.  And then also Joan, in the chat, we have (inaudible) making a follow up.  He's asking where does it check for what you mentioned and then he's asking whether they're assigned on the open government initiative.  Joan, would you like to respond to that?  Hello, Joan, can you hear us?  As we wait for Joan to come on, I hope you deep have any difficulties with unmuting your mic.  We can still take more questions and comments, please.

>> Hello, Peace.

>> PEACE OLIVE AMUGE:  Yes, Innocent.  I think I know what Joan talked about how this initiatives started up under who is actually (inaudible) the literal or who has been the partnerships and everything like that.  I will use an example of the government citizen interactions in Uganda that was started by the government through the minister of ICT.  The minister of ICT was able to roll out this initiative with support from the government of Korea.  The minister of ICT has a partnership with the governor of Korea on a number of issues like information security and access to information.  So the person who ‑‑ the other actors who were able to roll out this initiatives, they include, of course, the Civil Society.  The Civil Society actually placed that (inaudible) as we know.  For example in Uganda, the Internet Society, for example, Uganda chapter placed a (inaudible) in policy reforms because it has direct partnership with the minister of ICT and the Uganda commission organization.  It is a whole effort of everyone in this sector here in Uganda because this initiatives are not just a mindset of the government, but collective mindset of the Civil Society and the government with support from government the different government, foreign government and other partners.  Thank you.

>> PEACE OLIVE AMUGE:  Thank you very much, Innocent.  And then we have another question that is being asked.  What are the efforts that women or persons with disability, what efforts they can make to access open data.  Someone wants to second that question.  Elaine or Shamim, would you like to respond to this question.  They're wondering or asking how what efforts that women and persons with disabilities, you know, can make to access open data.

>> INNOCENT:  Thank you, Peace.  I think I can take that question.  Women or persons with disabilities should be able to access data.  We do agree that data government is there.  It is present.  The challenge is how these people get the data.  But as we all know, it is not a single responsibility.  It's not only the government that is responsible to make sure of that data is accessed by the citizens.  With citizens, the women and persons with disabilities should be able to put in an effort.  Help.  Make use of the initiatives.  We do agree the initiatives have challenges, yes.  For as long as you're able to know the initiatives exist, then you should be able to make use of them.  For example, I talked about the government photos all over east Africa.  When you look at how many people actually access these platforms, yes, the number is low, but not because everyone who is not accessing the platforms have no idea.  Some have an idea, but maybe the restrain from my using this platform to access data.  So the first thing I can talk about is the women and persons with disabilities should make this the opportunities they have access this data.  Some of this data is also in libraries, in public libraries.  For example in (inaudible), we have a number of public libraries and I can assure you that when you go to this public libraries, you actually find government data on almost every sector.  So with the citizens work to take up that responsibility, leave alone the challenges that a number of people are not possibly accessing this data, the ones who already know should be able to make use of this initiatives.  Secondly, we do agree that most of this data is on the internet.  And to some people, the Internet still remains.  However, given the people who access the Internet, possibly do not look at accessing and open data as priority to them.  Accessing government data, they don't look at it as priority.  So this also leaves a gap that actually some people might be aware of the government data and they might be able to access the Internet, but getting accessing government data is not part of their priorities.  So this brings me to engagement.  We need (inaudible) our populations.  One, we need to (inaudible) our population that open data is actually very useful to them.  And we need to (inaudible) about their rights to information.  This way we shall be able to achieve some of this.  Thank you.

>> PEACE OLIVE AMUGE:  Shamim, would you like to add something?  So please, Shamim, you can take over the mic.

>> SHAMIM NAMPIJA:  I would like to add that the government should develop measures for trained persons with disabilities and professional in the use of the different communication and technologies to enable help them access open data because what is the use of open data being in existence if I don't know how to access it and I don't even know how to ‑‑ I don't know if we existed.  Yes?  So people need to be made aware that this platform is available and trained on how to use this platform.  There's also the need to lower the input taxes on the ICP devices brought into the country.  It will be if ‑‑ then maybe we shall see more access to open data by persons with disabilities but you may go to the library and find that other library has only five computers.  Most of them are outdated.  So another thing is ministry of ICP has a body governing communications and technology.  It should develop guidelights specifically for persons with disabilities to empower them to access open data.  And with a development of this guidelines, they should at least try to streamline them into the national policies.  So we will see persons with disabilities engaging access in open data from the ministry of health, from the ministry of finance and education.  It needs to be exclusive trimline effort to see to that persons with disabilities access open data.  Thank you.

>> PEACE OLIVE AMUGE:  Thank you very much.  And I think we are coming to the end of our session and in the chat.  Joan has given or responded to where you can check out for the open data related questions that you ask on DRSC, please.  Have a look at the chat.  And then we have 1 hand raised up.  That Eileen.  You can take the mic.  We have just two minutes, please.

>> EILEEN:  Thank you.  Because I share with responsibility and action is required to challenge embedded (inaudible) and practical steps must be taken to create better data and also adopt clear policies and promote opportunities and (inaudible) for women and persons of disabilities.  So this will see them ‑‑ this will see the women and persons of disabilities accessing this data more easily.  Thank you.

>> PEACE OLIVE AMUGE:  Eileen, thank you very much.  And thank you all participants joining from the different countries, from the different organizations or joining as videos.  We're very happy for this great conversations that we had.  Thank you for the time that you created.  We have come to the end of the session and we are very grateful.  We stim have a number of comments coming in on this section, but unfortunately, we cannot take them now.  But we're really, really grateful for your time and all the insights you have given to us.  Thank you very much.  Have a good day, good evening and good night.

>> Mary:  Thank you very much.  Thank you.  Good session.

>> PEACE OLIVE AMUGE:  Thank you very much, Mary.

>> JOAN KATAMBI:  I was told we need to have a screen shot.  Hello, Peace?

>> PEACE OLIVE AMUGE:  Yes.  I can hear you.

>> JOAN KATAMBI:  You can take a screen shot of your screen?

>> PEACE OLIVE AMUGE:  Okay.  Thank you very much for all the participants.

>> Yes, please.  You have to do that to add it to your reports.

>> PEACE OLIVE AMUGE:  Okay.  Thank you.  And Raymond, will you end the session or participants will leave.  As they wish.

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