The Public Private Partnerships (PPP) model discussed at the Africa -India dialogue on ICT4D during a study tour to India of Africa delegates in December 2009 organized by CTA (Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation) is being analysed in Rwanda for possible adaptation and adoption.
Since 2006, the government of Rwanda through the Rwanda Information and Technology Authority (RITA) has been implementing Community Multipurpose Telecentres (CMT) project. So far 30 CMTs have been deployed in 30 districts in addition to two IT buses. This deployment process is part of implementing one of the ten pillars of the National ICT plan for spreading ICTs in rural communities of Rwanda. Currently, all CMTs are offering basic ICT services such as computer literacy training, Internet and secretarial services, photocopying, etc. Like in other existing telecentres operating in Rwanda, local content is a critical challenge to achieve financial sustainability of Telecentres as well as a barrier for local communities to benefit from using ICTs.
The newly established Rwanda Development Board – Information Technology (RDB-IT), former RITA, has set a plan to transfer the ongoing management of 30 MCTs to a Public Private Partnership (PPP) model. This arrangement will facilitate the transformation of existing MCTs into knowledge hubs and tele-innovation centres while ensuring that the original objectives of the MCTs are preserved. The MCTs will therefore have an enhanced role i.e. one that not only provide access to ICTs, but one that employs innovative approaches of using technologies to address the needs of the communities.
The key idea behind this transformation is to ensure effective implementation of E-government and E-governance plan while narrowing the “delivery gap” of public and private services to citizens.
Rwanda Telecentre Network (RTN) as a key player in telecentre mouvement in Rwanda share the same vision with RDB-IT but emphasizes the need to scale up pro-poor telecentre initiatives up to village level by extending the number from 30 to 1,000 Telecentres.
The issue of Public Private Partnerships (PPP) was the key element on the agenda for Africa -India dialogue on ICT4D during a study tour to India of Africa delegates in December last year organized and supported by the Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation (CTA). The aim was to analyze the concept of Public Private Partnerships (PPP) that is being used as a key factor for long-term sustainability of the telecentre movement in India and if possible replicate it in Africa countries .
It should be reminded also that the Africa delegation was made of senior officials in government, and civil society organizations from ICT sector and visited Calicut (Kerala State), Bengaluru (Karnataka State), Kolkata (West Bengal State) and New Delhi.