Digital Transformation Centre
The DTPS will be establishing a Digital Transformation Centre with the vision to create an integrated and comprehensive response for Africa to the technological revolution that is upon us, where ICT in general and communication networks in particular, will be the nervous system of the Next Generation Internet and other commercial networks and are the platform for driving the digital transformation that will underpin the 4th Industrial Revolution.
This Centre will focus on localisation and industrialisation through standardisation, intellectual property management and conformance testing of local ICT products. The Centre will also support ICT SMME innovations. The Centre will support entry and growth of SMMEs in various aspects of these future communication systems and networks.
It will further support usage of ICT technologies, that include Internet of things, Artificial Intelligence, Distributed Ledger Technologies, Virtual and Augmented Realities, Space technologies and other new computing technologies to drive transformation of other key sectors of the economy such agriculture, tourism, energy and manufacturing. The Centre will have four key focus areas; standardization support, conformity assessment, capacity of the ICT regulator to transition to a 4th generation regulator and ICT SMME innovations.
The Centre is a legacy project of the ITU Telecoms World 2018 to be hosted by South Africa in Durban in September 2018. Whilst located in South Africa, the Centre will service Africa to ensure that the continent is at the cutting edge of ICT technologies.
A concept document and business model for the Centre is currently being finalized by DTPS and CSIR with inputs from ITU, DST and the DTI.
ICT SMME Incubation Centre – Dube Trade Port and Innovation Hub Pretoria
As part of the ITU Legacy Projects, the Department of Telecommunications and Postal Services in partnership with CISCO intends to set-up a Tech SMME Incubation centres, to be located at the Dube Trade Port, Kwa-Zulu Natal and Innovation Hub, Pretoria. These centres will be hosted in an environment which will enable the building of solutions, and the ability to transform innovative ideas of SMMEs into real projects. The facility will grow into a space that allows sponsored SMMEs to build and stage their ideas. SMMEs using the facilities will be contracted on an agreed timeline to get their ideas to prototype level. Through various partnerships, the Department and Cisco hopes to develop current and cultivate new SMMEs in the ICT space and help them enter, grow and compete in the market. These centres will be launched simultaneously during the ITU Telecom World 2018.
Broadband Project by USAASA with MTN and Vodacom in Impendle Municipality in Kwa-Zulu Natal Province
The Minister of Telecommunications and Postal Services, Dr Siyabonga Cwele had on 12 April 2015 visited Impendle Local Municipality in a quest to introduce broadband initiative program announced by former President Jacob Zuma in his State of the Nation Address of 2015. During this visit, the Minister suggested that Impendle Local Municipality should come up with strategies that will enhance education standard within the area; like focusing more on subjects that promotes new technology. The Minister regards introduction of Broadband program as a means for efficient delivery of government services, conception of new businesses and job creation.
He visited numerous government facilities expected to benefit from the program to learn about connectivity challenges. These were Siyazama High School, Department of Justice, Impendle Post office, Police Station, Thusong Centre and Impendle NHI pilot Clinic. He tasked Telkom, other telecommunications companies and state-owned companies responsible for network connections to implement quick measures to solve connectivity problems in Impendle.
To date more than 10 sites have benefited from this initiative through implementation by USAASA and the launch is expected to take place on 17 August 2018 at Impendle. The launch will be led by Minister Cwele and the premier of the Province.