Ali Hussein ali at hussein.me.ke
Tue Jun 17 09:20:21 EAT 2014


Once in a while we must take stock of where we are at as a country beyond ICT because it is the environment we live in that ensures we succeed or fail.

There is no doubt that this country has come a long way since 'independence' and the bad old days of the KANU Regime.

What have we achieved since Multi-Partism? 

1. Freedom of speech and association, a more competitive political landscape and the De-Godization (my own words!) :) of the Presidency. 
2. A somewhat level playing field in the pursuit of happiness (read economic activities)
3. A more tolerant (not sure) society?
4. The 'discovery' of mineral resources (the wags have it that certain people high in government knew about the potential of our extractive natural resources long time ago and for whatever reason didn't move ahead to start exploiting them) and the potential economic empowerment for the country. 
5. And for our industry a robust playing field filled with hope and enthusiasm for the future.
6. The right regulatory environment for most sectors (especially ICT) is emerging and although a work in progress a step in the right direction.
7. Almost universal access to financial services through the use of mobile technologies.

Where have we retrogressed? 

1 Moi warmed us about the ills of Multi-partyism and that it will breed tribalism in its most virile form. Are we seeing his self-fulling prophesies come to light?
2. The more things change the more they remain the same? What has really changed in the political playing field? 
3. The recurrence of corruption networks.
4. Religious extremism never seen before and the almost ineffectual response by our disciplined forces.
5. A retrogressive regulatory environment? Or is it that there is less engagement with the industry then we have been used to in the last decade?  

I'm writing this because we MUST TAKE STOCK as an industry and ensure that we understand the environment we live in and how we can come together to change it. To give you an analogy I borrowed from Tom Friedman's famous book ' The World is Flat' - if the Operating System is flawed then it doesn't matter how good your desktop productivity tools are since you won't even be able to access them! 

What role can we play as an industry beyond penning opinions in lists like these, blogs and social media engagement? 

Ali Hussein

+254 770 906375 / 0713 601113

Twitter: @AliHKassim
Skype: abu-jomo
LinkedIn: http://ke.linkedin.com/in/alihkassim
Blog: www.alyhussein.com

"I fear the day technology will surpass human interaction. The world will have a generation of idiots".  ~ Albert Einstein

Sent from my iPad
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