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AFRIK-IT  February 1996

AFRIK-IT February 1996

Subject:

Re: AFRIK-IT Digest - 13 Feb 1996 to 14 Feb 1996

From:

Dr Eberhard W Lisse <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

African Network of IT Experts and Professionals (ANITEP) List

Date:

Sat, 17 Feb 1996 16:54:39 +0100

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (103 lines)

At 5:28 PM 16/2/96, Menghestab Haile wrote:
[...]
>Foreign companies will invest where ever there is profit to be made. (A good exa
>mple is SHELL in Nigeria!!).
Exactly. My point is in the comms field the big providers will go and take the
International Business but nt do anything for the national infrastructure.
 
Eg. in Lagos you have a well functioning Cell Phone system. You can from some
exchanges phone London like anything. However if a friend of mine, a consulting
engineer with a german construction company wants to tell his wife on the other
side of town he will be late for supper he routes this through London...
 
[...]
> BECUASE I AM ONE OF THE MILLIONS. Anyway, I said the new technology should be
>appropriate and give economic benefit to the common citizen. If not we should
>forget about it.
>
>Nemo lists what governments should do. That is exactly what I am getting at.
>Without positive government involvement, I see no way out.
 
Realistically I do have my doubts about getting GOV to do this in your average
African country. "La realite Africaine" :-)-O
 
 
[...]
>> A pertinent example, from this forum, is the ongoing debate on
>> internet in Rwanda. Look at what Dr Lisse has achieved with minimal
>> resources, and more or less without goverment support. Saying that
We did have GOV.NA support. But they did not interfere, they just became
a member of NAMIDEF (a big ne :-)-O).
 
>> Dr Lisse is an exception, is a gross insult to Africans in general.
>> There are plenty of resourceful people available, they just need the
>> opportunity to succeed. Waiting for the average goverment to get
>> its act together is just going to stifle that creativity.
>
>Why do you think some of the highly qualified and successful Africans are
>staying in the WEST? There are thousands of Dr Lisses. I come from on of the
>poorest villages in Africa and have proved to myself that it is possible
>to succeed. For many of my resourceful friends, the opportunity never came in
>their life time. Don't you think they deserve better.
Tere are many successful entrepreneurs. But still in this narrow field we need to
do some things were there just will never be a profit and so "we must make a plan"
as they say here.
 
>If profit was his motive, Dr Lisse would not spend his money and time doing
>what is he is doing. That is precisely what I am asking of every African.
I am not against profit per se. But in this narrow field it doesn't work.
 
 
>> WE Africans dont have the luxury of choosing who invests, nor IMHO
>> should we have. I think we all remember when "Made in Hong Kong" was a
>> symbol of low quality. SInce when did any government have the
>> crystal ball needed to determine which new idea will succeed or fail?
>
>I disagree with you. WE have the choice and we need to reassert that choice.
>It is the attitude of inherent inferiority complex that is hindering our
>development.
 
We do have the choice. We CAN tell the next ill advised project: "No. this is
not going to work. Take your money and go home." Do it once and in writing
to the Director General of the organisation at Head Office, I reckon they will
listen. You see, they are bureaucracies, if they can't sepnd their money
auditors ask questions, promotions are held up etc...
 
My wife always wonders what this is all about with sustainability and all:
"No problem, when the funding runs out, we get on our knees and beg,
we are used to this." :-)-O
 
>> Who's to say that the email/fax idea Mr Lucas mentioned wont succeed.
>
>That is very simple to do. We know how to do it and Dr lisse could give
>you a whole lecture on that. So what?
>
>It is interesting that a lot of people talk about connecting African countries
>to the internet. That is not difficult and is not very expensive as Dr. Lisse
>has demonstrated, but what is the priority? Personally, I would prefer to
>build and strenghten the information infrastructure within the country (say
>National Internet) as a priority. If there is an environmental or natural disast
>er (locust, flooding, drought or disease out break), in a region within a
>country how do we go about it? I thought IT would play an important role there.
 
Exactly. We are fortunate that we do have optic cables to the rural north. But we
have one subscriber who has to go through a manual exchange and he has trained
the operators to know what they must do when they hear the modem in Windhoek
screetch. PPP works!
 
Natioanl infrastructure is what we need. Not so much for desasters but see my
previous message on this. But Internet is important, beacsue most programs
have been written elsewhere already...
 
 
el
 
 
--
Dr. Eberhard W. Lisse \ / Swakopmund State Hospital
<[log in to unmask]> * | Resident Medical Officer
Private Bag 5004 \ / +264 64 461503 (pager) 461005 (home) 461004 (fax)
Swakopmund, Namibia ;____/ Zone/Domain Contact for the NA-DOM
Vice-Chairman, Board of Trustees, Namibian Internet Development Foundation,
an Association not for Gain. NAMIDEF is the Namibian Internet Service Provider.

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