Uganda’s IT service providers to be certified

All providers of Information Technology (IT) services including registered companies, training institutions and professionals in Uganda are to undergo a certification process in order to be allowed to operate in the country, the National IT Authority (NITA-U) has said.NITA_UAccording to Dr Fredrick Kitoogo, NITA-U director planning, research and development, The certification process will be done in conjunction with Uganda Revenue Authority, Kampala Capital City Authority, Uganda National Bureau of Standards, Ministry of Trade and Industry and Public Procurement and Disposal of Public Assets Authority

Dr. Kitoogo made the remarks in an interview published on March 23, 2015 by the Monitor newspaper. He said, “the major reason is to protect consumers’ interests. You realise that most of the computers on the local market are substandard and we can only eliminate them by certification.”

The move is aimed at ensuring that service providers conform to minimum international standards that Ugandans are able to trust.

He said that currently, if one wants to export IT services from Uganda, the service provider need to be recognised internationally. He added that certification will also enable NITA-U to promote safety and reduce effects of counterfeits.

“There is also need to improve the processes, procedures and standards, which are being followed by different providers and professionals, and also need to have a code of conduct that will be followed,” he noted.

The certification excercise is being backed by three Ugandan laws namely, The Computer Misuse ACT 2011, Electronic Transactions ACT, 2011, Electronic Signatures ACT, 2011. According to Kitoogo, NITA-U develops IT standards and so far more than 40 national standards have been developed some of which relate to Internet service provision. We have developed the certification framework for Internet service providers to ensure that they conform to international standards and by doing so they can be able to compete internationally and ensure that the services they provide are up to standards.