Revelation by Information and Communications Technology (ICT) Cabient Secretary Joe Mucheru (pictured) that a Kenyan IT company was awarded a Sh151.5 million contract to make software for the electronic gadgets that were used during the recent Population and Housing Census should be music to each and every Kenyan’s ears.
The decision by Kenya National Bureau of Statistics shows government’s confidence in Kenyan firms, particularly those dealing with ICT, is growing. The lucrative tender was won by Juniper Intakes Limited.
That no hiccups were reported, especially touching on the gadgets, during the enumeration exercise proves that Kenyan companies are as good as their global counterparts in the field of ICT.
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Indeed, there is little doubt that Kenyan companies excel in virtually all facets of the economy. Kenyan academics are also renowned across the world. In fact, there have been murmurs in the UK that academic frauds there have been paying Kenyan students to do their assignments. In a nutshell, Kenya has the best the world can offer.
It therefore boggles the mind why the Government rushes abroad whenever it has contracts worth billions of shillings to offer. Why should exam papers and even ballot papers be printed abroad, for instance? Needless to say, these are jobs that can be done locally by our companies, in the process creating jobs and even earning the country income.
Of course, the Government will argue security is a key consideration in exporting this billions. But that’s neither here nor there. The UK has never sent exam papers to Kenya for printing. How do they secure their processes? This is the only thing we need to learn. Kenya will only take off when all appreciate our full potential.