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ICTs for a Sustainable World #ICT4SDG
Africa Region Preparatory Meeting for the World Telecommunication Standardization Assembly (WTSA-12)
Durban, South Africa, 21-22 May 2012 Contact:

Remarks at the opening ceremony of WTSA/WCIT

21 May 2012


Mr. Gift Buthelezi, Deputy Director General of the DOC , Republic of SA
Mr. Malcom Johnson, our elected official and Director of TSB

Mr. Abdoulkarim Soumaila, our partner and SG of ATU
Distinguished participants in your respective capacities
ITU and ATU colleagues here present
On behalf of BDT and the ITU ROA, I would like to welcome you to Durban and to these preparatory meetings for the World Telecommunications Standards Assembly and the World Conference on International Telecommunications. It is a pleasure to see you again after the ITU RDF we recently held in Kigali.

Mr. Johnson will talk to you about WTSA / WCIT and the importance of Preparing for them, so I will not. I just want to thank you for recognizing Africa's collective interest in having Telecommunication Standards and Regulations that serve her interests in its bid to use ICT as the vehicle out of perpetual poverty. Whatever collective position you agree to take on the various issues in the next few days will give Africa leverage during WTSA and WCIT, and the decisions taken then will impact our development as a continent for generations to come. As we individually and collectively work to ensure security of cyberspace, the efficient use of radio-frequency spectrum and satellite orbits, promote appropriate strategies and policies, encourage infrastructure development to bridge the digital divide and use ICT to mitigate climate change, and as we establish workable standards to provide global telecommunications for everyone, if we do not make the right decisions now, we shall have lost this decade, the decade for Africa's development.

Most of what TSB does emanates from the work of Study Groups, which I know Mr. Johnson will be talking about. I would however like to encourage your participation in these study groups as it is only then that we can positively influence the standards in favor of Africa’s agenda.
I thank you and wish you fruitful deliberations.