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Pan-African Group Launches Report On Digital Rights And Inclusion

(AFRICAN EXAMINER) – A frontline Pan-African enterprise, Paradigm Initiative has launched its 2021 annual report on digital rights and inclusion.

Paradigm Initiative works to ensure digital empowerment and promote a positive rights environment, supporting public policy toward Internet Freedom in Africa through a diverse team of 29, working out of sub-regional offices in Cameroon, Kenya, Nigeria, Senegal, Zambia, and Zimbabwe.

The 2021 Annual Digital Rights and Inclusion Report – LONDA, was unveiled at the closing ceremony of the 2022 edition of Digital Rights and Inclusion Forum which was held in Kenya.

The Forum was organized from April 12th to May 20th virtually and in-person sessions in a host of Paradigm Initiative’s country partners across 17 African nations.

LONDA 2021 expands on last year’s report with findings from 22 countries, examining themes of privacy, freedom of expression, access to information, segmentation and exclusion, digital transformation, affordability, gender, and others within existing legislative frameworks, and against the backdrop of a widening digital divide.

Moreover, this edition captures the gaps and proffers recommendations to achieve a digitally inclusive and rights-respecting Africa.

While stressing the importance of the report in Africa, the Executive Director of Paradigm Initiative, Mr. ‘Gbenga Sesan said the need for ground breaking rights-respecting frameworks in the continent can never be overemphasized.

“Africa needs to make an urgent choice between focusing on clampdowns and maximising digital opportunities so we don’t miss out on the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR). As Paradigm Initiative’s 2021 LONDA report shows, yet again, many of the 22 African countries featured in the report are too busy violating digital rights to focus on the digital opportunities that the COVID-19 pandemic has put a spotlight on their relevance.

“The report is timely as it assesses the state of digital rights and inclusion in Africa, and also provides recommendations on what each country must do to move towards realising the huge gains that rights-respecting and inclusive digital policies and practices bring”, he said.

Paradigm Initiative’s Communications Officer, Valery Njiaba said this year’s Digital Rights and Inclusion Forum brought together over 800 delegates and participants for 39 days to dissect the state of digital rights and inclusion in Africa in 18 virtual sessions and 16 in-person sessions.

Njiaba added that the event was attended by experts, stakeholders, and advocates within the digital rights ecosystem in Africa to deconstruct and demystify digital rights and inclusion, sharing recommendations for a proper digital rights implementation within Africa.


Short URL: https://www.africanexaminer.com/?p=77080

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