The Jubilee government rode into power with the promise of being a digital government and has since made huge strides to achieve this key pillar of their manifesto. At the core of this is the laptop project, an ambitious plan by the government to issue devices to children joining standard one. The project had delayed over several years but begun in earnest in the last financial year. First was the awarding of the tender to the consortia of Moi University– JP SA Couto and Jomo Kenyatta University of Science and Technology (JKUAT)- Positivo BGH for Kshs. 17 Billion to supply laptops.
The two begun a pilot in 150 schools across Kenya which after conclusion saw the distribution of these devices start on September 1st. According to ICT CS, Joe Mucheru 56 schools were given devices yesterday with the number growing by the day. The government is now keen to extend the project, aptly referred to as the Digital Literacy Program to secondary schools and universities. The goal of this extension would be to make Kenya a world capital of Information Communication business outsourcing. The CS further said that this would allow for the creation of a large pool of ICT human capital which would place Kenya strategically in the global ICT stage.
The CS said this during the launch of the presidential digital program, another project which trains graduates before deploying them to work in various government departments. The Presidential digital program has just had its second intake which has seen the number of graduates inducted grow from 150 to 400 graduates. The CS further said that the government has been making deliberate efforts to leverage on local skills to transfer half of the outsourcing and on-line jobs to Kenya over the next ten years. Currently, 41,000 Kenyans earn an income fully from online activities and this number is set to grow further as government increases investments in ICT.