Basseterre, St. Kitts, May 12, 2020 (SKNIS)
Ophelia Blanchard, E-Government Coordinator in the Department of Information Technology outlined several areas within the Government of St. Kitts and Nevis’ Digital Transformation Strategy 2020-2022 noting that they are relevant to the Federation during COVID-19 and beyond.
“The need to strengthen the broadband infrastructure – as we note that, internet connectivity is a critical resource right now. Without that internet connectivity we would not be able to do work from home and even able to render this broadband live so we applaud the telecoms companies’ within St. Kitts and Nevis – Flow, Digicel, the Cable – for coming onboard and seeking to extend and build and strengthen our internet capacities throughout the different communities,” said Ms. Blanchard during the May 11 edition of the National Emergency Operations Center (NEOC) COVID-19 Daily Briefing.
Another area of importance is a multi-layered sustainable cybersecurity programme which is critical as it serves to protect internet users from being hacked.
“It is at this time that we are really calling upon the businesses and the government departments to look to strengthen their cybersecurity programmes to ensure that the systems that they deploy within their companies and organizations are secured and consistently updated,” he said.
Ms. Blanchard added that a digital legal framework is also critical because “every time there is a need for us to draft a Regulation it is important to be able to consider the implications and therefore, the rapid development of the legal framework is important.”
Other areas of the strategy include information and data management, digitization of government services, creating an ecosystem of innovators to provide solutions for local and export market, e-commerce and online shopping, as well as developing a digital academy linking public and private sector.
“What we find emerging is an ecosystem of innovators of entrepreneurs who are inspired during this time of crisis to be able to come up with creative solutions ready, not just for the local market but also ready for export,” said Ms. Blanchard. “And so, we are hoping to see that even though persons would have lost their jobs through the current pandemic… we are looking forward to having new areas, a build out of our technology industry and really instill in new skilling and upskilling of our persons in the Federation.”