WINDHOEK – Minister of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Stanley Simataa yesterday said he is deeply confounded by the continued theft and vandalism of information communication technology-related infrastructure that seems to be escalating in the country.
Speaking at the official launch of the sixth ICT Summit, Simataa said that theft and vandalism are not viable solutions to the vast economic challenges faced by the majority of Namibians.
“Everyday I receive reports of either solar panels, solar batteries, poles or even optic fibre being stolen. When these items are stolen from ICT infrastructure it deprives communities in the affected areas of much-needed ICT services. The people vandalising and stealing the infrastructure do not live on an island, they among us as a community and as a society. They continue to steal and vandalise because we keep on providing them with a market for their ill-gotten gains,” said Simataa.
The minister was reacting to an ongoing trend of criminals targeting remote ICT infrastructure in an attempt to pilfer the facilities to make a quick buck.
At the launch of the ICT Summit, which took place at the Namibia Institute for Public Administration and Management (Nipam), Simataa announced the list of Platinum, Gold, Diamond and Silver sponsors who in total contributed over N$1 million to this year’s summit. New Era Publication Corporation was also confirmed as a Platinum sponsor for availing more than N$200 000 in advertising for the summit.
At the same event, Executive Director in the ICT ministry, Mbeuta Ua-Ndjarakana, called on all players in the various ICT sectors to become more involved with the annual summit, which this year takes place under the theme ‘Accelerating Digital Transformation in Namibia’.