ICT-Africa-SummitThe Commonwealth Cybersecurity Forum 2013, that took place at Palais de Congress,Yaoundé, Cameroon has proposed various approaches to Cybergovernance, with general agreement on the role Cyberspace could play to facilitate development equitably and fairly across the world

The forum organised by the Commonwealth Telecommunications Organisation (CTO), was opened yesterday  by Hon Jean-Pierre Biyiti Bi Essam, Minister of Posts and Telecommunications, Republic of Cameroon, who was representing Hon Philemon Yang, the Prime Minister of Cameroon.

Delivering his address, Hon Biyiti Bi Essam referred to the central role Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) play in economic development.

He referred to the evidence which suggests that a 10% growth in broadband penetration contributes to the growth of Gross Domestic Product by 1.38%, but also noted that this growth can only be realised if the ICT channels remain safe, secure and resilient. Inviting the delegates to take advantage of the impressive line up of speakers whose expertise covers almost every aspect of Cybersecurity; Hon Biyiti Bi Essam encouraged the CTO to continue to help the Commonwealth build robust Cybersecurity frameworks and help facilitate inter-Commonwealth coordination.

The Plenary that followed examined how Cyberspace could be governed and utilised in a manner to foster freedom and entrepreneurship, while protecting individuals, property and the state, leading to socio-economic development. Speakers of this session,  added their perspectives on various approaches to Cybergovernance, with general agreement on the role Cyberspace could play to facilitate development equitably and fairly across the world.

While taking the delegates through the range of activities CTO has undertaken to help its members secure their ICT channels, Prof Tim Unwin, Secretary General, CTO, informed delegates of the organisation’s plans to develop a unique Commonwealth model for Cybergovernance. Voicing the commitment of the UK for the CTO’s endeavors to develop such a model, Mr Jamie Saunders, Director, Cyber Policy, Foreign and Commonwealth Office, UK, confirmed the UK’s funding support to the project.

The event continued to consider many other aspects of Cybersecurity and Cybergovernance, including legal frameworks, international cooperation and technical measures.

Hosted by the Ministry of Posts and Telecommunications of Cameroon together with the Telecommunications Regulatory Board of Cameroon and backed by partners and industry supporters including ICANN, Council of Europe, Microsoft, MTN Cameroon, AFRINIC and Internet Watch Foundation.

Credit: Africa Telecom & IT