Gideon, envoy say ICT key in war against Covid
By Moses Nyamori
| August 5th 2021
Kanu chairman and Baringo Senator Gideon Moi yesterday held bilateral talks with Australian High Commissioner Luke Williams.
They discussed partnership in harnessing green energy and use of technology in the fight against Covid-19.
Gideon, who is also the Senate Information Technology Committee (ICT) chairperson, said Covid-19 has forced many institutions to embrace technology to monitor, anticipate and avert the spread of the disease.
Gideon said ICT has become integral in the provision of education for those who cannot resume physically learning.
He noted that unprecedented challenges posed by Covid-19 have forced the world to come together to tackle the pandemic.
“The outpouring of global solidarity and support sparked by this shared challenge has been phenomenal,” he said.
He said there have been achievements and miss-steps in responding to the pandemic and called for concerted efforts to fight the disease.
The senator noted that the pandemic was changing how people think about the economy and society, and the policies governments come up with today will be key for posterity.
At the same time, Gideon urged local and regional governments to ensure they protect human rights in the face of technology.
“As the virus continues to spread around the world, governments are putting in place important restrictions on the movement of people, functioning of services and rules on physical distancing," he said.
"Within this context, technology can have a profound effect on citizen’s daily lives and ensure access to health services, access to information and communication with competent authorities, among other things,” he added.
The senator and envoy noted that ICT in the Covid-19 era has proved a vital tool in service provision by local and regional governments.
Kenya and Australia have maintained bilateral trade relations for 51 years through collaboration in agriculture, food security, counter-terrorism, mining and education. Trade between the two countries hit more than $115 million last year.
"Wheat and minerals are Australia's main exports to Kenya while coffee and vegetables make up the bulk of imports," said Gideon.
The High Commissioner regretted that ties between Australia and Africa are often not appreciated.
He said pest control in the production of flowers would ensure increase in exports.
Williams noted that Kenya and Australia have similar climatic conditions which can be exploited to boost agriculture, especially dairy farming.
The leaders said over the past two decades human-induced climate change has become subject of environmental and political agenda.
Gideon said last month he launched the 32nd edition of Rhino Charge in Baringo County which raises funds for wildlife and environmental conservation.
The event, an off-road 4×4 contest, raises funds to support activities of the Rhino Ark Kenya Charitable Trust, an NGO on conservation and protection of Kenya’s mountain range ecosystems popularly known as “water towers”.
The 2021 competition attracted more than 65 entrants.
The senator said while climate change poses significant global challenges, it also provides strong incentives for research and development and creative problem-solving to help cities and communities anticipate and adapt to the impact.
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