Category

ICTs

Call for applications to the 4th Edition of the Paradigm Initiative (PIN) Digital Rights and Inclusion Media Fellowship

By | #PINternetFreedom, Advocacy, Digital Rights, DigitalJobs, DRIF, DRIMF, ICTs, Internet Freedom, Press Release

Fellowship period: 1 March 2021 – 30 June 2021

Application Period: 21 October 2020 to 12 November 2020

The application process is now open for the 4th edition of the Paradigm Initiative (PIN) Digital Rights and Inclusion Media Fellowship (DRIMF). Through academic and practical learnings, Paradigm Initiative Digital Rights and Digital Inclusion Media Fellowship 2021 seeks to embed media professionals within the digital ecosystem. Media Fellows will connect with PIN teams in Cameroon (Yaoundé), Ghana (Accra), Kenya (Nairobi), Nigeria (Aba, Abuja, Kano and Lagos), Zambia (Lusaka) and Zimbabwe (Bulawayo).

The fellowship seeks to expose media professionals to an underreported field of work at national and regional level, increasing reporting on digital rights and inclusion in Africa. Selected media professionals must be affiliated to media institutions within Africa and available to commence the fellowship from 1 March 2021 to 30 June 2021, to connect and collaborate mostly virtually, and where applicable, be present for in-person activities.

Paradigm Initiative’s Digital Rights and Inclusion Media Fellowship is a 4-month program designed to immerse outstanding early career journalists in the digital ecosystem. Selected media professionals will work with Paradigm Initiative on various projects and contribute to improving public understanding of digital rights and inclusion issues in Africa. Applications are open to journalists working in Africa.

Components of the fellowship

  • Online Digital Rights/Inclusion academic training.
  • Interaction with PIN team members within Africa.
  • 4-month virtual mentorship and collaboration with Paradigm Initiative.
  • Fellowship may include fully-funded local and international travel to participate in and cover relevant events related to Digital Rights and Inclusion.
  • A monthly stipend and a one-time research grant during the fellowship period.
  • Paradigm will pair fellows with in-country mentors for the time of the fellowship who will meet the fellows at least twice during the fellowship.

Expectations

Fellows will dedicate a minimum of ten hours a week to fellowship-related activities. Each Fellow will be expected to participate in all scheduled activities and to publish, in their affiliated media (Print, TV, Radio, Online), at least 4 features/reports on digital rights and inclusion issues during the fellowship period. Fellows will retain full editorial direction on the stories that they publish in their affiliated media. In addition, each fellow will produce a research paper on a relevant topic with the guidance of the PIN Team of not more than 1500 words which will be published by PIN. Fellows will be expected to continue to provide coverage on digital rights and inclusion issues after their fellowship.

Requirements

The Fellowship is open to early career journalists with not more than 8 years’ experience in the media sector and affiliated with mainstream print and online newspapers in Africa. Interested candidates must have a relevant undergraduate degree and demonstrate previous coverage of human rights and/or tech issues and interest in advancing digital rights and inclusion.

How to apply

Kindly complete the form here

Vacancy: COMMUNICATIONS MANAGER

By | DigitalJobs, ICTs, L.I.F.E.

Paradigm Initiative (PIN) is a non-profit social enterprise that builds ICT-enabled support systems for young people, in order to improve their livelihoods. Two of PIN’s programs focus on digital inclusion while the third focuses on digital rights advocacy. Paradigm Initiative’s digital rights advocacy program is focused on the development of public policy for internet freedom in key regions of Africa. Our policy advocacy efforts include media campaigns, coalition building, capacity building, research and report-writing.

Job Summary:

To oversee all internal and external communications for Paradigm Initiative while ensuring our message is consistent and engaging. The main duties include managing our digital platforms, including website, social media accounts, email and other dissemination tools. The successful candidate will publish and promote marketing, editorial and fundraising content/campaigns on our digital platforms and across social media. The Communications Manager will be a member of PIN’s Leadership Team, supporting strategic oversight of the organisation’s operations.


This position is also responsible for maintaining Paradigm Initiative’s partner database and providing regular communications with partners. It involves preparing detailed media reports, press releases, and marketing materials; coordinating and delivering resources and processes in support of media and communications; researching, writing, editing and publishing information about Paradigm Initiative to be used for internal publications for employees, management, partners, volunteers and the public.

Reporting To:

Chief Operating Officer

Roles and Responsibilities:

  1. Communications 
  • Publish a variety of digital content with a focus on producing engaging web pages that are visually appealing and provide an overall rich experience for partners and visitors. Manage all postings to ensure content is on-brand and search- and social-optimized.
  • Timely response to the communications needs of team members and the giving of timely updates regarding any ongoing project.
  • Produce all email campaigns, solicit content from internal sources, and manage review, testing, and sending.
  • Lead digital execution and participate in digital advocacy—across email, website, print and social media—of programmes and projects across offices and Regions throughout the year.
  • Develop and execute social and print media campaigns for key days, themes, and priority upcoming content.
  • Create content for social media accounts and post regularly on each account.
  • Manage social ad campaigns and other promotions; track and share results for continuous improvement to targeting and segments.
  • Promote new content, key pages, and calls-to-action across channels. Position content to target different segments and to fit the format and publishing requirements of each platform
  • Coordinate and support communications projects, outreach, and products as needed
  • Support team members in the translation of documents and other communications from English to French and vice versa.
  • Proofread and coordinate production of communications materials

      2. Financial Management 

  • Manage allocated budgets for all tasks and cost-effective maintenance of digital assets
  • Raise funds for the organization through the deployment of digital media skills and through relevant grant opportunities
  • Monitor the social media networks for grants and funding opportunities for the Organization

      3. Business and Media Management 

  • Develop and implement long term and project-based communications strategies.
  • Develop and produce content to engage and educate audiences across various channels including newsletters, blogs, graphics, website, social media
  • Develop and execute social media activities across multiple channels
  • Oversee the development and maintenance of PIN’s website
  • Contribute to overall digital content strategy and inform the calendar of upcoming topics, news and milestones, and external opportunities to guide content planning.
  • Research and collect information and data for content and communications strategy
  • Help manage and drive events including developing email invitations and managing invitation lists
  • Seek regular opportunities for the Leadership Team to engage with major foundations, corporate partners, and other organizations on social media and curate up-to-date lists of key accounts.
  • Compile and maintain media and community database
  • Create and update marketing materials and documents in support of fundraising, grants, projects and programs
  • Organize online events, perform outreach and marketing, create social sharing toolkits, manage “day of” social media and more
  • Be responsible for managing PIN’s Digital Rights and Inclusion Media Fellowship
  • Identify and research media outlets, producers, editors and reporters towards making them receptive to PIN’s message
  • Track and record media mentions related to Paradigm Initiative’s work
  • Ensure adequate media coverage for all program activities and functions in electronic and print media, and on digital media platforms 
  • Identify good stories and exercise good storytelling skills
  • Other projects as assigned

Education and Experience:

  • Bachelor’s Degree in Mass Communication, Public Relations, Journalism or any other related field
  • Proven experience with communications research and strategy, media relations, content development for various audiences, digital engagement best practices
  • At least 7 years of relevant communications experience; digital communications experience is highly preferred
  • Experience publishing content on WordPress, Squarespace or other CMS
  • Proven experience managing digital media advertising for social campaigns

Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities: 

  • Must be a strong communicator; have excellent written, presentation and oral communications in both English and French
  • Attention to details and problem-solving skills
  • Ability to manage time, deliverables and meet deadlines
  • Must be a creative and strategic thinker with good judgement and ability to make independent decisions in a changing environment
  • Software skills desired –  WordPress, SquareSpace, MailChimp (or similar email service provider), offline and cloud-based productivity tools
  • Flexibility and ability to work collaboratively with others especially other team members
  • Good understanding of ICT issues and policies in Africa


How to apply

Send a one-page statement of interest, in English, with your recent CV attached to hr@paradigmhq.org.

The application will be open till October 30, 2020, but it will be filled as soon as we find the right fit. If you think you are the right fit, do not delay in sending in your application.

 

Vacancy: Program Officer – West Africa

By | DigitalJobs, ICTs, L.I.F.E.

Paradigm Initiative (PIN) is a non-profit social enterprise that builds ICT-enabled support systems for young people, in order to improve their livelihoods. Two of PIN’s programs focus on digital inclusion while the third focuses on digital rights advocacy. Paradigm Initiative’s digital rights advocacy program is focused on the development of public policy for internet freedom in key regions of Africa. Our policy advocacy efforts include media campaigns, coalition building, capacity building, research and report-writing.

Job Summary:

To provide essential support to Programs, working with the Senior Program Manager and other team members to achieve projects’ success. To manage the Digital Rights and Digital Inclusion programs and events, in West Africa, relevant to accomplishing the organization’s strategic goals and objectives, as well as to establish networks with other institutions.

Reporting To:

Senior Program Manager

Roles and responsibilities:

  1. Policy and Administration
  • Support with the identification and interpretation of program strategies and policies across the region
  • Plan and design programs and events; proactively monitor its progress, resolve issues and initiate appropriate corrective action
  • Ensure effective quality assurance and the overall integrity of the program – focus inwardly on the internal consistency of the program and outwardly on its coherence with infrastructure planning, interface with other programs and corporate technical and specialist standards
  • Assist in administering training for other support staff and team members
  • Monitor and document policy development around digital inclusion and digital rights  in your region
  • Log complaints and problems associated with running the programs effectively
  • Support the administrative team when the need arises
  • Attend corporate functions in order to build the organization’s network
  • Ensure timely completion of programs within set deadlines

2. Resource Control and Financial Management

  • Effectively manage tools and resources for program implementation
  • Keep records of all financial transactions associated with program processes and completion
  • Ensure proper management of all budgetary allocations for program management
  • Send accurate monthly financial records to the Finance & Assets unit while staying within the limits of approved budgets.
  • Collaboratively work with the team to ensure effective usage of resources

3. Program Planning and Implementation

  • Impact the organization’s output by developing and interpreting initiatives and new trends of program development
  • Render advisory services to the Program Manager or when required on matters of program planning, implementation, development and sustainability
  • Provide essential support services to the team on a regular basis
  • Provide regular updates of all planning processes, practices and program methodology
  • Collect and collate all reports of completed programs and events

4. Research and Fundraising

  • Research and develop materials and reports that outline the successful completion of programs
  • Identify, and work with the Senior Program Manager  to contact, potential grantees for funding and identify other income streams for the program
  • Work with the Senior Program Manager and the rest of the team in writing grant applications
  • Develop a budget and operating plan for each program
  • Contribute to the analysis and communication of key digital policy developments in your region by developing at least one (1) policy brief per quarter
  • Contribute to reports and research on Digital Policy developments

5. Community Relations

  • Identify, develop and promote partnerships with other external organizations
  • Manage communications with all stakeholders
  • Provide the communities with relevant information about PIN’s programs and events

6. Advocacy and Communications

  • Represent PIN at public events and/or in mass media
  • Strengthen PIN’s networking with funders, foundations and other relevant organizations to develop grant-making and programmatic partnerships and collaborations
  • Identify communications opportunities and strategies to raise awareness about PIN
  • Create connections between issues relevant to digital rights and inclusion and opportunities for PIN to leverage its position in advocacy circles
  • Plan and conduct outreach activities to enhance and sustain existing and future networks with potential grantees and funders

Education and Experience:

  • A qualified lawyer and a member of the Bar Association of their country
  • A background in Policy or equivalent experience
  • Work experience of 3-5 years in supporting programs with multiple stakeholders
  • Flair for and experience in budgeting, writing and reporting
  • Project management and proposal development experience strongly preferred.
  • Experience in program design and training

Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities:

  • Must be a strong communicator; have excellent written, presentation and oral communications in both English and French
  • Vast knowledge and understanding of program planning, analysis, implementation and development
  • Ability to professionally engage and work with key stakeholders in various settings
  • Demonstrated ability to draft proposals, reports and results of research or other organizational documents with minimal supervision
  • Strong understanding of digital rights advocacy issues
  • Time management and administrative skills
  • Proven ability to set priorities, work independently and take initiative, manage multiple projects simultaneously and meet deadlines
  • Good knowledge of research methods and practices 
  • Competence in the usage of computer systems, software, data and IT applications.
  • Good interpersonal skills

For the purpose of gender balance, a female candidate will be preferred. 

This position is based in Senegal.

How to apply

Send a one-page statement of interest, in English, with your recent CV attached to hr@paradigmhq.org.

The application will be open till October 30, 2020, but it will be filled as soon as we find the right fit. If you think you are the right fit, do not delay in sending in your application.

Appel à co-auteurs

By | Advocacy, Digital Rights, DigitalJobs, ICT Policy, ICTs, Internet Freedom, L.I.F.E.

Un rapport sur les droits numériques et l’inclusion en Afrique

Contexte

Paradigm Initiative (PIN) est une entreprise sociale qui construit un système de soutien basé sur les TIC et milite pour les droits numériques afin d’améliorer les moyens de subsistance des jeunes mal desservis. À travers ses équipes, partenaires et réseaux à travers le continent africain, PIN surveille l’état des droits numériques et de l’inclusion en Afrique et intervient avec des programmes et des actions qui répondent le mieux aux défis. L’écosystème numérique en Afrique est marqué par des violations des droits numériques que PIN a bien identifiées dans ses rapports sur les droits numériques en Afrique et a fait l’objet de délibérations mondiales sur des plateformes régionales et internationales telles que DRIF, le Forum sur la gouvernance de l’internet et RightsCon.

Grâce à la communauté des droits numériques et de l’inclusion, les initiatives de plaidoyer changent le paysage numérique en garantissant que les meilleures pratiques sont adoptées dans les politiques et la législation en Afrique. Des progrès significatifs sont en cours dans certains pays africains pour combler le fossé numérique et méritent d’être reconnus. Dans ce contexte, il est pertinent que le PIN documente les droits numériques et les violations d’inclusion, souligne les jalons et formule des recommandations pour améliorer le paysage numérique en Afrique.

Paradigm Initiative sollicite les services de chercheurs sur les droits numériques et l’inclusion en Afrique pour être co-auteurs d’un rapport continental annuel sur les droits numériques et l’inclusion. Chaque chercheur retenu fera rapport sur un pays spécifique. Paradigm Initiative versera une allocation de 800 USD au chercheur pour un travail achevé et soumis de manière satisfaisante.

Justification et portée du rapport

PIN cherche à compiler le rapport annuel 2020 qui donne une analyse approfondie de l’état des droits numériques et de l’inclusion en Afrique en examinant les violations, les lacunes, en enquêtant sur l’utilisation et l’application des politiques et de la législation, ainsi qu’en formulant des recommandations clés pour faire progresser les droits numériques et l’inclusion en Afrique. Le rapport dégagera également des thèmes clés à débattre lors du prochain DRIF21 et mettra en évidence les domaines d’intervention exceptionnels.

Méthodologie

Le rapport comprendra des rapports spécifiques aux pays bien documentés qui sont référencés et soumis par les auteurs des membres de son équipe et de la communauté des droits numériques et de l’inclusion. L’étude des pays adoptera une approche multiforme, combinant des méthodes empiriques et de recherche documentaire pour évaluer à la fois les aspects quantitatifs et qualitatifs des droits numériques et de l’inclusion en Afrique.

Contenu attendu

Les rapports nationaux doivent inclure un contexte et un historique; identifier et discuter des domaines d’évaluation thématiques, se référer à tout cadre juridique, politique et institutionnel du pays et faire des recommandations. Les rapports nationaux peuvent inclure, sans s’y limiter, l’un des domaines d’évaluation thématique suivants;

  • Impact de la réglementation COVID-19 sur les droits numériques et l’inclusion.
  • Jouissance de la liberté d’expression en ligne en 2020
  • Protection des données, confidentialité, identifiants numériques et surveillance
  • Coupures d’Internet
  • Lois sur le discours haineux, la désinformation et la diffamation criminelle
  • L’exclusion numérique en Afrique et son impact sur les droits humains
  • Infrastructure numérique et hiérarchisation des TIC.

Expertise et qualification requises

  • Bonne connaissance du pays sur lequel portera le rapport ;
  • Un diplôme pertinent.
  • Expertise, connaissances et expérience des droits numériques et de l’inclusion.
  • Ligne directrice pour les articles
  • Longueur acceptable du rapport de pays : 1500 mots
  • Anglais ou français.
  • Les auteurs doivent s’assurer que tous les statistiques, faits et données sont correctement référencés.
  • Un seul rapport de pays par chercheur sera accepté.

Les candidats intéressés, veuillez soumettre une réponse accompagnée d’une copie de votre CV et d’un échantillon de travail écrit d’ici le 19 septembre 2020 ici. Les délais complets seront communiqués aux candidats retenus. Les réponses seront communiquées le 1er octobre 2020.

Call for Co-Authors

By | Advocacy, Digital Rights, DigitalJobs, ICT Policy, ICTs, Internet Freedom, L.I.F.E.

A Report on Digital Rights and Inclusion in Africa

Background

Paradigm Initiative (PIN) is a social enterprise that builds an ICT-enabled support system and advocates for digital rights in order to improve livelihoods for under-served youth. Through its teams, partners and networks across the African continent, PIN monitors the state of digital rights and inclusion in Africa and intervenes with programs and actions that best respond to the challenges.  The digital ecosystem in Africa is marked by digital rights violations which PIN has aptly captured in its Digital Rights in Africa reports as well as been subject for global deliberations at regional and international platforms such as DRIF, Internet Governance Forum, and RightsCon.

Through the digital rights and inclusion community, advocacy initiatives are changing the digital landscape ensuring best practices are adopted into policy and legislation in Africa. The meaningful strides being taken in some African countries to bridge the digital divide are worth acknowledging.  With this background, it is pertinent that PIN documents digital rights and inclusion violations, highlights milestones and makes recommendations for improving the digital landscape in Africa.

Paradigm Initiative seeks the services of researchers on digital rights and inclusion from within Africa to be co-authors of an annual continental report on digital rights and inclusion. Each successful researcher will report on a specific country. Paradigm Initiative will pay a stipend of USD $800 to the researcher for work satisfactorily completed and submitted.

Rationale and Scope of the report

PIN seeks to compile the 2020 annual report that gives an in-depth analysis of the state of digital rights and inclusion in Africa by examining violations, gaps, investigating the use and application of policy and legislation as well as draw key recommendations for advancing digital rights and inclusion in Africa. The report will also draw key themes for deliberation at the upcoming DRIF21 and highlight outstanding areas for intervention.

Methodology

The report will comprise of well-researched country specific reports which are referenced and submitted by authors from its team members and digital rights and inclusion community. The study of the countries will take a multifaceted approach, combining empirical and desk-research methods to assess both quantitative and qualitative aspects of digital rights and inclusion in Africa.

Expected Content

Country Reports must include a context and background; identify and discuss the thematic assessment areas, refer to any in-country legal, policy and institutional framework and make recommendations. The country reports may include and not limited to any of the following thematic assessment areas;

  • Impact of COVID-19 Regulations on digital rights and inclusion.
  • Enjoyment of Freedom of Expression online in 2020
  • Data Protection, Privacy, Digital IDs and Surveillance
  • Internet Shutdowns
  • Hate Speech, Misinformation and Criminal Defamation Laws
  • Digital exclusion in Africa and its impact on human rights
  • Digital infrastructure and prioritization of ICT.

 Required expertise and qualification

  • Good understanding of the country to be reported on;
  • A relevant degree qualification.
  • Expertise, knowledge, and experience in digital rights and inclusion.

Guideline for Articles

  • Acceptable Length of Country Report: 1500 words
  • English or French.
  • Authors to please ensure that all statistics, facts and data are properly referenced.
  • Only 1 country report per researcher will be accepted.

Interested candidates, kindly submit a response together with a copy of your resume and sample written work by 19 September 2020 here. Full timelines will be communicated to successful candidates. Responses will be communicated on 1 October 2020.

Vacancy: Finance and Assets Manager

By | DigitalJobs, ICTs, L.I.F.E.

Paradigm Initiative (PIN) is a non-profit social enterprise that builds ICT-enabled support systems for young people, in order to improve their livelihoods. Two of PIN’s programs focus on digital inclusion while the third focuses on digital rights advocacy. Paradigm Initiative’s digital rights advocacy program is focused on the development of public policy for internet freedom in key regions of Africa. Our policy advocacy efforts include media campaigns, coalition building, capacity building, research and report-writing.

Job Summary:

The Finance and Assets Manager will be responsible for the financial health of Paradigm Initiative. One of his/her core functions will be to produce financial reports and develop strategies based on financial research. The successful candidate will guide and support the Leadership Team and Executive Director in making sound business decisions in the long and short term.

The FAM will be responsible for distributing the financial resources of Paradigm Initiative including budget planning and will support the executive management team by offering insights and financial advice that will facilitate sound business decision-making

Reporting To:

Executive Director

Responsibilities:

  • Monitor the day-to-day financial operations within the company, such as payroll, invoicing, and other transactions
  • Oversee financial department employees, including financial assistants and accountants
  • Prepare monthly and annual Management Reports
  • Manage the liquidity of the Organization
  • Contract outside services for tax preparation, auditing, banking, investments, and other financial needs as necessary
  • Track the company’s financial status and performance to identify areas for potential improvement
  • Seek out methods for minimising financial risk to the company
  • Research and analyse financial reports and market trends
  • Provide insightful information and expectations to senior executives to aid in long-term and short-term decision making
  • Review financial data and prepare monthly and annual reports
  • Prepare and present financial reports to board members, stakeholders, executives, and clients in formal meetings
  • Stay up-to-date with technological advances and accounting software to be used for financial purposes
  • Establish and maintain financial policies and procedures for the company
  • Understand and adhere to financial regulations and legislation
  • Prepare financial reports and reconciliations to general ledger data
  • Make timely recommendations for mitigating strategies and risk rating changes
  • Prepare and review timely assets management reports
  • Prepare regular investment reports and risk assessment of investments
  • Manage and maintain all properties and acquisitions
  • Strategize on the best model for managing the organization’s assets and resources
  • Conduct periodic review of all assets and acquisitions
  • Evaluate the value of all properties and suggesting ways for generating revenue
  • Objectively review Paradigm Initiative’s business processes
  • Evaluate the efficacy of risk management procedures that are currently in place
  • Protect against fraud and theft of Paradigm Initiative’s assets

Required Skills and competencies

  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills;
  • Excellent organizational skills, follow-through attitude and attention to details;
  • Strong analytical and problem-solving skills;
  • Good supervisory and leadership skills;
  • Research skills;
  • Critical thinking skills;
  • Innovative and creative abilities;
  • Integrity;
  • Multi-tasking abilities;
  • Honesty;
  • Thorough knowledge of relevant laws on Accounting and Taxation;
  • Knowledge of and experience with various Accounting software such as Quickbooks.

Education and Experience

  • A First Degree in Accounting, Economics or Finance;
  • Must be a member of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants or the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria;
  • Possession of a second degree will be an added advantage;
  • Must have at least 7 years’ hands-on experience in a Senior Finance role;
  • Hands-on knowledge of relevant accounting and taxation laws.
  • A background in audit would be an added advantage.

Key Performance Indicators

  • Monitoring the day-to-day financial operations within the company, such as payroll, invoicing, and other transactions;
  • Developing, implementing and monitoring Financial strategies and initiatives 
  • Regular development of overall Financial strategies, systems, tactics and procedures aligned with Paradigm Initiative’s Best Place To Work initiative and Strategic Management Plan;
  • Minimizing costs and maximizing profits to promote organizational growth;
  • Performing internal and external auditing functions when required;
  • Procurement of quality assets and items for the organisation at the best price;
  • Tagging of assets at a maximum of 2 days after purchase;
  • Quarterly update of inventory of assets in all PIN’s offices;
  • Annual error-free auditing of the Organization’s finances;
  • Monthly error-free drafting of financial reports;
  • Monthly statutory payments;
  • Maximum of 3 days downtime for any asset.

For the purpose of gender balance, a female candidate will be preferred. 

How to apply

Qualified candidates should send their resume with subject as FINANCE AND ASSETS MANAGER to hr@paradigmhq.org.

The application closes on Friday, October 30, 2020, but the position will be filled as soon as we find the right fit. If you think you are the right fit, do not delay in sending in your application. Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted.

Compensation very attractive. 

Déclaration de Paradigm Initiative sur les pertubations d’Internet au Mali

By | ICTs, Internet Freedom, Press Release

 

Les Organisations de la Société Civile au Mali sont encore profondément préoccupées par les multiples coupures d’Internet enregistrées avant et pendant les deux tours de l’élection présidentielle de 2018.

En effet le 29 Juillet 2018, jour du premier tour de l’élection présidentielle au Mali, le pays a enregistré à plusieurs reprises des coupures d’internet. Selon certains utilisateurs des TIC, l’ensemble des communications électroniques ont été perturbés pendant la période électorale.

Ces perturbations des réseaux Internet enregistrées s’ajoutent à celles de ces derniers mois dans le pays. La perturbation des médias sociaux tels que WhatsApp, Facebook, YouTube et Skype est aussi une pratique régulière utilisée par le gouvernement pour entraver la communication entre les populations en période électorale et limiter l’action des opposants.

Au regard de la situation, Paradigm Initiative ainsi que l’ensemble des organisations de la société civile rappellent au gouvernement Malien que de tels actes violent la Déclaration Universelle des Droits Humains(DUDH), les déclarations sur les libertés de l’Internet et de la Gouvernance de l’Internet de l’Union Africaine(UA).

Paradigm Initiative appelle par ailleurs le gouvernement Malien à rétablir sans délai l’ensemble des réseaux Internet de communication sur l’ensemble du territoire national, tout s’abstenant de provoquer de nouvelles perturbations dans la période postélectorale.

Paradigm Initiative demande enfin que les réclamations concernant les différentes violations des droits numériques soient réparées tout en favorisant un accès équitable au service Internet sur l’ensemble du territoire national.

Digital Rights Workshop: Empowering Advocates in Cameroon

By | ICT Policy, ICTs, Internet Freedom

Paradigm Initiative in partnership with Internews, AfroLeadership, and CYEED organized a 4-day Digital Rights Workshop from the 18th day of June 2018 to the 21st June 2018 in Douala, Cameroun.

The aim of the workshop was to discuss with civil societies, government, private individuals and other stakeholders in the digital rights landscape of Cameroon and to also train participants on their Digital Rights and on advocacy. This training in June was the third training held in Cameroon as previous training had been held in both Barmenda and Yaounde.

                                      

Participants at this workshop were exposed to a variety of training and resources. While the first two days witnessed new participants, the last two days were for selected persons from groups which had already been working on projects surrounding digital rights from the last two sessions.

One of the first and basic subjects on which the participants were trained was on the topic of what Digital Rights entail, in a session tagged  ‘Digital Rights 101’ led by ‘Gbenga Sesan, Executive Director of Paradigm Initiative. Participants were trained on what internet and digital rights are, on the power of the internet, privacy surveillance, freedom of expression, opinion, association and so on.

In another more streamlined session on ICT Policy in Cameroon, the Google Policy Fellow at Paradigm Initiative, Rigobert Kenmogne treated issues like the laws and the evolution of ICT policies in Cameroon, ICT players and other factors contributing to the ICT Policy landscape in Cameroon.

The session on advocacy and communications was quite impactful as participants not only learned about strategies for advocacy but also on how to communicate a message. The participants were taught on project evaluation and monitoring, knowledge development, public speaking, creating coalitions and so on.

At the same training, a report was also presented by Adeboro Odunlami, Program Assistant (Digital Rights), Paradigm Initiative. The report embodied a case study on the digital rights situation in francophone African countries. At this session, almost all participants shared experiences on the negative effect of digital rights violation witnessed in their country. Paradigm Initiative also shared some lessons it learned from the Africa NetRights Coalition and the Digital Rights and Freedom Bill.

As the workshop progressed, participants were made to carry out practical tasks and discussions.

A session on ‘Building Trust and Relationships’ witnessed the participants answering questions such as ‘what is the current digital rights landscape in Cameroun?’, ‘where does my Organization/work fit in?’, ‘How can we all work together to make each other stronger?’ and other pertinent questions

At the end of this session, many participants revealed personal and organizational skills and resources which they’d be willing to share with other civil societies towards the goal of solving problems we had earlier identified.

For instance, a participant offered free workspace and technological support to another participant who indicated that his organization was working on a website compendium of laws and decrees of Cameroon in English and French language. Yet another participant offered free training for the Interns of participant organizations on Digital Media and Digital Rights. Another offered free social media visibility services and graphic design services. Another offered her skill to engender projects and make other Organizations’ projects more inclusive. Furthermore, another participant offered digital security training for free. There were also offers of free Newspaper pages for Advocacy materials and subsidized training on Communication, Writing Report and Press releases

Participants were also involved in other hands-on sessions where they prepared solutions to problems projected to occur at the upcoming election. Ideas/solutions presented involved building a coalition to facilitate internet access, writing open letters to the government, sensitization, and education of the electorate, managing post-election violence and so on.

                                                          

Also at the workshop, Internews shared a guideline with the participants to facilitate a better understanding of its sub-grant application process.

Elevator pitches were also facilitated by all partners at the workshop to train participants on the proper and precise communication of ideas; a much-needed skill for advocacy

More topics treated at the workshop include budget development and project management for their digital rights projects.

How Nigeria and the Developing World Can Help Reduce the Connectivity Gap

By | ICTs

By Babatunde Okunoye

According to the Broadband Commission for Sustainable Development, the world will achieve 50% internet use by the world population at the end of 2018 – just over 7 months away. If the world maintains current internet user growth rates, we will not approach 100% global internet adoption for another two decades.

Achieving 50% internet use by the end of 2018 represents big progress, yet much needs to be done to ensure that in our world of about 7.4 billion people, the roughly 4 billion still unconnected access the enormous developmental potential of the internet.

The Broadband Commission’s in its 2025 plans for connecting the unconnected global population to the internet, has set ambitious targets which include:

  1. By 2025, all countries should have a funded National Broadband Plan or strategy or include broadband in their Universal Access and Service (UAS) Definition
  2. By 2025, entry-level broadband services should be made affordable in developing countries at less than 2% of monthly Gross National Income (GNI) per capita
  3. By 2025, Broadband-Internet user penetration should reach: a) 75% worldwide b) 65% in developing countries c) 35% in the least Developed Countries
  4. By 2025, 60% of youth and adults should have achieved at least a minimum level of proficiency in sustainable digital skills
  5. By 2025, 40% of the world’s population should be using digital financial services
  6. By 2025, overcome unconnectedness of Micro-, Small- and Medium-sized Enterprises (MSMEs) by 50%, by sector
  7. By 2025, gender equality should be achieved across all targets

As target “3” clearly reveals, there is an admission that the developing world is crucial in the attainments of broadband access plans. Countries in the developing world such as India (1.29 billion), Indonesia (262.7 million) in Asia and Nigeria (198 million) and Ethiopia (108 million) in Africa account for a very significant proportion of their continent’s population and thus hold the key to bridging the digital divide.

Interestingly, according to data from the International Telecommunications Union, all of these four pivotal nations have Internet penetration less than 30%. It is easy to see how focused policy efforts in the efficient use of Universal Service Provision Funds, free urban Wi-Fi zones, removal of multiple taxation schemes such as “Right of Way” payments, the use of innovative new technologies like TV white spaces in these strategic nations can make a significant impact on global digital access statistics.

In Nigeria in particular, the National Broadband plan is scheduled to be revised this year. With many parts of the country (particularly rural areas) still lacking access to the Internet, all options must be on the table to bridge the digital divide in Africa’s most populous nation. While the current broadband plan mentioned the possibility of exploring innovative technologies like TV white spaces, in implementing this strategy was neglected. Yet the poor Internet coverage in inaccessible rural areas in Nigeria is the precise reason why such innovative technologies must be an integral part of the revised broadband plan.

 

Babatunde Okunoye works as Research Officer at Paradigm Initiative.

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