Discussion on Formulating Africa IGF

30 September 2011 - A Other on Regional & National Initiatives in Nairobi, Kenya

Session Transcript

September 30, 2011 - 11:00AM


The following is the output of the real-time captioning taken during the Sixth Meeting of the IGF, in Nairobi, Kenya. Although it is largely accurate, in some cases it may be incomplete or inaccurate due to inaudible passages or transcription errors. It is posted as an aid to understanding the proceedings at the session, but should not be treated as an authoritative record.


>> Good morning, Ladies and Gentlemen.  You can speak French if you need to do so because you have interpreters in the booth.  Welcome to this workshop on the African Internet Governance Forum.  As you know, Africa has been participating in IG for many years, starting from the world Senate on the Information Society process.  This around 2000 2002, and now after this, some mechanisms were established to make sure that continents to be discussed in order approach.

Today you are here to learn the African IGF, which is supported by all stakeholders, and will be coordinated by the African Union which is here.  We have 90 minutes, and I would like the convenors of the IGF to be brief to give a statement on what they have done and the challenges they have been facing and how they want to go in the future.

Before that, we'd like to thank the Government of Kenya, Alice Munyua, who is coordinator of IGF because pushing her because of her support.

This meeting also I'd like to reiterate that it came about from the various IGF which decided to come at the continental level to learn what from today's IGF.  With that notice, I'd like to give the floor with the head of the information division of the African union to open this workshop.  Mukdar?

>> Thank you, Macan.  Thank you, everybody, for having me here.  This is my first time, actually to really get involved with the Internet Governance and relative issues community.  The first time I heard about this IGF was few month ago in the margin of ‑‑ and was actually pushing Macan and myself to see what we have to do after that.  I'm glad that after a few months, we are able now to launch the FIGF ‑‑ AFIGF. 

So without going too long, I would like to with the support of the African Union with regard to the AFIGF, we would like to make sure and to assure you that the IGF‑‑ the AFIGF will be a Forum for the Africans to discuss their issues and to make sure their voice are heard with regard to the global, what I can say, Internet Governance Forum.

Without further ado, I would like to enter the thanks to all of you for being here, to the government of Kenya, to Alice and to those who have supported us so far to make this happen.

Without further ado, I would like to declare and say that our meeting is open and thank you for being here.


>> Thank you, Muktar.  Now according to the programme, we'll go by alphabetical order for the speakers.  The first one will be the convener of the central African IGF.  You have the floor, five minutes.

(awaiting interpretation from French).

>> Now we'll give the floor to Alice the convener of the IGF.

>> Thank you very much.  And thank you for organising this meeting and for all of you.  And once again welcome to Kenya.  Kenya has convened the east African IGF since 2008.  The first meetings having taken place in Nairobi in 2008 and 2009, the third one in Campari Uganda in 2010 and this year the are you WAN Dan government hosts ‑‑ Rwandan government hosted it.

It was the first regional African ‑‑ regional Internet Governance Forum, and so we have been a good case study for most of the other regions in terms just the approach it's taken, the bottom‑up approach.

We usually work with governments, industry technical community international partners, as well, media, academia and we've added as the process evolved, we included parliamentarians and this year we even had a session for children.  So it continues to evolving and to adapt to the local context.  What normally happens is we have national processes for Kenya and Uganda, for example, the discussions, to identify the critical governance issues.  These issues are then validated at a national level at a face‑to‑face meeting, one‑day meeting that takes place in the various five countries.  The national IGFs then form the building block for the regional IGF.  At the regional level, we then select a few issues that we bring to the global IGF.  But we don't stop there because we decided we do not want to be limited by the limitations of the global IGF in terms of not being able to make decisions or not being able to ‑‑

(audio lost).

We basically used the first two days and then we used the last day to actually talk about in terms of what the thoughts were about structuring, about how it would work and so on and so forth.  At the end of the three days, the communique was issued that basically outlined the areas that people had identified as needing attention by various actors, but that also spoke to some of the aspirations in terms of SGIGF should or would evolve.  At this particular point in time, I would say that we are at the point where we have collected the initial thoughts and comments regarding restructuring, but there is need for wider consultation I think within the region among the various stakeholders because obviously I think it would be important to get as much input as possible in terms of how people perceive the evolution of the SGIGF, and so for the rest of the year, that will be the goal is to actually get further inputs, have further consultations on the process and how it evolves.  Beyond that also looking into the issues of the national IGFs is one of the things that came out very clearly from the members was that the national IGF is that there's a lot more emphasis to put ‑‑ so that will be what will go into the plan of work for next year.

In terms of challenges, I would say that obviously the multistakeholder concept being something that's fairly new, it's something that's a bit difficult I think in terms of trying to get everybody on board and trying to get more balanced representation.  I think that in this inaugural meeting, we achieved some measure of success but I think there's still a bit more work to be done in terms of engaging all the various stakeholders.  Funding obviously continues to be something that has to be looked at, and that's something that was discussed as well to say that how are we going to ensure stainability of this Forum.  And this must be talked about and discussed from the very beginning so that we don't find ourselves two years down the line and we are not able to sustain or continue the process.

There's still a bit more work to be done in terms much raising awareness.  I think that there's still ‑‑ to some extent there's still this misconception that the governance is only for IT or IT professionals.  I think the message need to go out that people understand that these are issues that affect anybody and everybody who uses the Internet in one way or another.  And I think that's something that still needs to be dealt with in terms of encouraging participation in forums such as this.  Thank you.

>> Thank you for your presentation.  Now we will give the floor to West African IGF presented here by Nnenna Nwakanma, please, you have five minutes.

>> NNENNA NWAKANMA: Thank you for coming.  The West African IGF is managed by a consortium, a consortium of servant partners, ECOS is the economic of African states.  And SOFSA ‑‑ APC which is the Association for Progressive Communications, IISD, which is the international institute for the sustainable development, the panel for west African and ISO South Africa these are the major players heading the consortium themself.

There are key factors that I would like to take away from the western African IGF.  We had four face‑to‑face meetings so far.  The region itself is composed of 16 countries.  And out of 16 countries, at least 10 have some sort of Internet Governance initiative ongoing in country.  We have a website.  It is WAIGF.org.  And it looks like the Web master itself is online now tweeting.

We also have a Twitter handle.  It is @AWIGF.  And we have a vibrant Facebook community, so please join us.  We have received report from Senegal, from Nigeria, from Ghana, who in each turn have hosted face‑to‑face meetings.

We have received report from UCEWA.  We have received support from FOFSA, we have received support from after Afrineck.  Afrineck give us the domain name.  And ‑‑ South Africa.

We have learned at least a lot of lessons that we would like to share.  The first lesson we have learned is that unless there were agencies in country, ‑‑ (audio lost).

West Africa IGF have been contributing to in Africa.  Stipend to motivate her, otherwise she's already motivated.

We have been engaging on research because we have found that most of the data being given across especially in West Africa is data dating from far behind, so we're working with ISD on this initiative.  But more research is needed.

We'll have signed contracts depending upon the funding we receive.

(audio lost).

>> That has been also in Africa, in Tunisia, the remarkable efforts of all African colleagues where there is something to applaud, actually.  And I recall, as well, the first African ‑‑ meeting for the Internet Governance which was in 2006, it was called Africa on the road to Athens.  It was held in Cairo in the former ministry and also in partnership with the ECA and developed that participation from all African stakeholders in that meeting.  But if you allow me to say, I dare to say it was a spark of an African regional IGF that went on and on after that.

So dear colleagues, let me say that Egypt has always believed in regional coordination very strongly and in harmonizing views between the different parties.  And the African community has been more than recognizing the importance of the IGF as an interesting and interactive platform for the exchange of user experiences.  And I think we have managed very well to position a lot of our needs and our interests of our stakeholders on the agenda of the global IGF.  So not only has it helped raising awareness but also we have been pushing a lot of issues that are really of very common interest to all of us. 

We all share the same interest of broadband access, of international connectivity prices.  And I dare say that there are so many emerging issues that are becoming more and more important to discuss within African parties like, for example, the policies of cloud computing and all the issues that are affecting the infrastructure in our countries and the investment by our operators.  So today as we gather here to launch the African IGF, let me again say that the north African region has not been very active in establishing its own regional or national even IGF like other African and colleagues.  But truly the efforts that other colleagues have done in the other regions are now building blocks for establishing the African IGF.  And I'm sure our colleagues from Tunisia would share my same view that with the Arab Spring and the exciting times that we are living in our region, we are witnessing a lot of potential within our Internet stakeholders, within our Internet communities, and we have a lot of faith that our region would be more and more active in that era.

So as a region and speaking on behalf of Egypt also, we much support this initiative and we look forward to our future meetings.  Thank you.


>> Thank you very much, Christine for giving the situation in the view of North Africa and give us hope to establish north African governance Forum.

Now, as you know, this Forum is multistakeholder in nature, so I would like to have some of the stakeholders to take the floor.  Especially to state their support because you are here to see the support you want to give to this African IGF.  We've ‑‑ we need to have one person from the ministries of communication to give her sentiment on where you are going because up to now, apart from Christine who is coming from government, all the speakers are coming from civil society.  Can you have representative of government view one only?  To give his or her view one only?  Yes.

You have three minutes.

>> The primary experience I receive is ‑‑ further more ‑‑

(awaiting English translation).

>> Thank you.  I thought you had interpretation, but apparently we don't have.  Okay.  So now what is the problem?  Oh, I thought it was.  Sorry.

So let me just give a summary of what Mr. Gils has said.  Well unfortunately I don't have that anymore.

The IGF is one of the results of the process and which is very important because it's multistakeholder.  But however, they don't feel yet the idea of operating but the whole continent should work together and also put in place several ideas and they will do so to work in civil society, private sector and especially at the national level.  Said that we need to have really IGFs work at the national level the basis for ‑‑ IGF.  2015 is not far where we have to report all what has been done.  And Africa should do work as one entity to come up with compositions as we did in other Forum and hope that this African original idea will be something to bring out position at the global level.

Now I will leave the floor in the list you had, we had Nepa ‑‑ three minutes each, please.  Do you wish to speak?

>> I shall be very brief.  Thank you for the opportunity.  I just want to assure the stakeholders that the planning and coordinating agency will give its support to the stakeholder initiatives to keep the African continent up‑to‑date with issues affecting Internet and the growth of the whole sector.  I thank you.

>> Thank you, Nepat for coordination unique for your support now.  I give the floor first to South Africa.  For three minutes?

>> Thank you very much.  Good morning, colleagues.  From the Department of Communications, we also want to echo our support to the establishment of this African IGF.  We have been supporting the IGF process within the principles.  I think it's actually a very key platform in terms of solidifying our position from the various regional blocks.  But I'd also like to pose a question to both the AUC as well as ‑‑ in terms of what then will be the relationship between the African IGF and the AUCIT programme, especially the ministers?  I'm saying this in light of the fact that I think the number of public policy programmes that we need to probably look into, we have to look at links between the programmes that are being discussed with African IGF as well as the cyber security framework which has been developed by the UC and Juneca.  And within the African framework as well as the decisions that took place from the last AUCIT minister.

I think also within that programme we also need to urge the ministers in terms of establishing national processes.  Let's talk about that.  The few countries I seem to note that obviously had ongoing programme at national level, and I think it's important that we probably urge all member states to make sure that there is that multistakeholder at national level.  And also, then, to discuss the other issues as well that are linked to it.  At national level whereas I think we're looking at the cyber security framework, we're also looking at issues related to access as well broadband as well as in terms of vulnerable groups.  Women, children, people with disabilities as well as your youth.  So those are some of the key issues that obviously I recognize at national level have.

We have established our own national IGF process which should take place annually, and it will be an ongoing dialogue.  We're hoping from obviously the various role players and they will all have to implement but as far as ministry we're championing and we're putting ourselves forward to say we will look at where there is policy gaps, we will address that through those forums.  Thank you.

>> Thank you.  Now Afrinet is not here?  Afrineck?

>> Thank you, Chair.  I want the three minutes.  I would like to thank first of all the organisers of the regional IGFs.  ISOC is proud to be participate in all the IGFs and to support them.  We believe that IGF is mainly local issue and that it is very important to have not only regional IGFs but national IGFs because that's where we believe the impact is.  And we believe also that very important that we share experiences at practical level and believe that the discussions that we're having today to establish some kind of Forum for having all these regional IGFs come together and help each other is very important.

I would like to stress on one point, I think it's very important that the regional IGFs make sure that the IGF model is followed at that level, that we really have multistakeholder partnership.  I know that it's challenging that some of you have said, but it's really important that we follow that model.  And I think we can do it.  Thank you.

>> Thank you.  UNESCO would also like to join this occasion to join with the previous speakers in endorsing the establishment of the African Internet Governance Forum.  We see this Forum as an important modality for continuing to advance Internet Governance and the ongoing developments of Knowledge Societies in Africa.  And so we take this occasion to commend various regional actors and the African communion and the ECA for their foresight and efforts and energy in creating this very important mechanism.

I'd just like to add from the inception of the process, UNESCO has repeatedly underscored the full and active participation of all stakeholders and so we trust that, again, this will be one of the staples of this AFIGF.  In the past, we have supported the realisation of the multistakeholder process by providing support in terms much capacity building, providing information resources, technical expertise, supporting consultative meetings, exchange of experiences, data collection, research, et cetera.

And so we look forward to contributing in these areas to this effort.

As you know, we are also responsible for a number of the post WSIS action lines in areas such as E‑science, e‑education, culture, media.  We feel these have a very strong relevance for Africa, and of course AFIGF opens up doors for, again, deepening this work.

Again and again we've identified UNESCO ‑‑ UNESCO's identified Africa as one of our two strategic priorities.  The second priority is gender.  And so again we see this as again a logical space and place for us to be.  We also have a number of cooperative partnerships with key agents, ECA and also with the African union.  So, again, we look forward to collaborating and bringing our support in the areas related to our mandates and areas of competence.  Thank you.

>> Thank you very much, UNESCO.  Is OIF here?

>> Thank you, Chairman, I'm going to speak in French naturally.

(speaking in French).

>> Thank you, Merci beaucoup, IGF.  They are applauding this initiative.  It will enable Africa to harmonize its voice and to speak in one voice on the future of Internet.  But he said that we should in two aspects, that is the sustainability and the nature of the process, said the process should only be top‑down approach but from a bottom‑up where the stakeholders are part of the process and are, in fact, leading it.

He is also thanking LULAC for coordinating this process.

Now we give the floor to DiploFoundation and see what type of support they want to give to the process.  You have the floor.

>> Thank you.  Well, it's a great pleasure to greet you on behalf of the DiploFoundation and to see that the African IGF is really running.  To some extent, we feel it like our baby, as well.  I remember the tweet that Nnena sent first day of April from the workshop announcing the birth of the African IGF.  And on the other hand, it's a pleasure seeing so many of our active being active in the African issues and pushing the African IGFs and that's something after all we wanted to achieve the programmes of the capacity building.

There is one note that I wanted to emphasize both from the perspective of diplo experience with the process and the different forums around the world that we helped with, but also if the perspective of someone who was involved in the organisation of the European IGF, and that is the IGF is a continuous process.  It shouldn't be just an event.  And there are two very important aspects of that that I'm sure you're all aware of but just reiterate.

The first one is the e‑participation.  Remote participation we have here is just one component.  E‑participation is much more.  It is the continuous process of building the programme for the next meeting, bringing up the documents, discussing them, negotiating if it's necessary, and many of these things can be done easily online even with not that much bandwidth.  That's the experience that we can share and we encourage you to use, as well.  And have as much as possible.

The second component of this continuous process is the capacity building, is raising the capacities of stakeholders around the world and especially when it comes to the IGF meetings, this is parliamentarians, decisionmakers in regional institutions, the ambassadors and the people that are basically going to be involved in negotiating and bringing decisions so that they get the awareness of what the holistic scope of Internet Governance.

I can only conclude that Diplo will definitely remain supportive of all the initiatives in Africa as much as we can with the capacity building programmes.  Well, let's hope that we'll see many, many African IGFs in the next time that is coming.  Thank you.

>> Thank you very much, Diplo.  Now we'll give the floor to the private sector.  Our colleague from Nigeria?

>> Thank you.  My name is Jim son.  I am the president of the technology association of Nigeria and the vice Chairman of the world information technology and services alliance responsible for evangelizing ICT around Africa.

I would like to begin by really commending Egypt and ‑‑ for making Africa proud.  We're happy that two African nations that hosted IGF now is consider Kenya.  And also to commend AUC, NECA and all the stakeholders for bringing this idea forward.

One thing I have, for example, is when we talk about multistakeholder, the private sector are mostly the picture, we have the business community.  For example, I'm from West Africa, talking about West Africa, the stakeholders, the business communities where apparently out of the least radar.  So I want to really recommend that all stakeholders indeed should be involved, be incorporated at the continental level and also principally at the national level.

The idea of IGF at the continental level is very good, but we must realise that much of the decision taking still lies at the national government at the jurisdiction at the national level.  But of course to always have facilitate.  I would like to encourage all of us here even though ‑‑ facilitate as Catholics.

>> Sorry an interpretation from remote participation.  Can you be louder?

>> All right.  What I want to emphasize.

>> You can summarize now.

>> Yes.  All right.  We support this initiative, we must remember that the take‑away must be implemented at the national level.  And talking about cyber security principles and this convention and also a number of IT facilitation processes in terms much really converging policies at the national level.

And finally all this is to enable us to realise this is 2015 topics.  And that's where I really appreciate the theme of this year's IGF, about development.  So it's about Africa, IGF's about Africa.  I commend this initiative.  We must ensure that it's sustained and is supported buy all stakeholders.  Thank you.

>> Now we give the floor three minutes to academia.  Ben?  You have the floor.

>> Thank you, Macan.  I'm not sure how much of an academic I am, but I think this is a useful initiative.  First of all, I wanted to say that the fact that national and regional processes are evolved to the level where a global or continental process has been thought about is commendable.  But I want to stress a couple facts.  One is that the multistakeholder model should still continue.  Given the structure of the AEU UNECA and in the forms that they are, I think it's important that they keep the concept of multistakeholders in mind.

I will therefore in that concept, and that is the fact that we shouldn't look at multistakeholders as the people within the Internet community alone; that is, for instance if you're going to have the IT companies, IT services companies, it should not just be IT service companies, there are private sector institution for whom the Internet underpin and for whom the Internet have benefits that should be at the table, as well.

So our extension of the concept of multistakeholders should be very clear from the very beginning.  I think that would be the success of such a continent‑wide institution have.

Second and final thing I'm going to say is that the contributions that ISD, my institutional for sustainable development, has given so far to some of the national regional processes in West Africa has been in the area of research.  Alice has mentioned research.  And the fact is that research provides evidence.  Evidence of what the needs are on the ground.  And the second thing that research does is provide consent.  Consent in terms of how this evidence can have impact in the communities.

So we think we bring that sort of experience to the table and would like to make sure that the Forum understands that the importance of this on the table and the need for it in terms of moving the African IGF forward.  Thank you.

>> Thank you.  This is true.  You talk about research and you are not from academia.  You are, that's why I gave you the floor.

Now, the last will be for civil society, access.  Three minutes.

>> Thank you, Macan, n.  I received yesterday an email from ‑‑ with the president of Access to represent the network in this meeting.  For those who don't know Access, it's African civil society for open Information Society, a network created on the fringe of the first phase of the world summit Information Society in Geneva 2003.

Access support the initiative of the African IGF.  I think that the most important thing is that the voice of Africa is brought to the main or to the global IGF and the coordination is absolutely necessary.  And he was right when he spoke about what ‑‑ did for the information society and also for my first IGF.

So I think that the main mission of this IGF, of the African IGF would be the coordination of the positions of all Africans.  Africans I mean governments, civil society, private sector, the multistakeholder model is very important.  And I have not said that for some subregional IGFs, it was organized by organizations only.  And I hope that in the future they will be more inclusive to include the governments, too.  Thank you.

>> Thank you very much ACSIS.  We had forgotten one of our own institutions, which is African telecommunication union.  And the Director is here.  And we would like him to tell us in 10 minutes which support is going to give to ‑‑ Sumaya, you have the floor.  Thank you. ‑‑ give to FIGA.

>> Thank you, good morning, everybody.  Sorry I just come late but what I want to say is we as African telecommunication union, we support this.  And I want also to say to this Internet community that we need all research, academia, civil society, to come to African telecommunications union because we do work with a lot of things in standardization, so we have a meeting in which in Geneva we will prepare African common position.  So all normal ‑‑ Internet community are welcome on that meeting.  And I believe that is to help Africans to have a good proposition on the WTSA, what you call communication assembly.  So normally our first preparatory meeting will be in Cairo, Egypt on 29th November‑1st of December.  So all of the committee are there, here.  So we ask them to come, UAT that are so we just go there you will see our information.  And if you want to attend our meeting, you just fill the information for the registration.  It's free.  You will not pay anything.  And we think that again you can come and give your input in this meeting.  Thank you very much again, Mr. President.

>> Thank you very much.


Now, if you would like to reply to some of the questions which you're asked before we move forward, we'd like to state that this process follows the global IGF process.  We want it to be fully multistakeholder and also fully multilingual.  Today we didn't have translation, but next time we'll have at least translation into French.

What we had circulated in the terms of reference, it was indicated that we will have regional convenors in three other stakeholder representatives.  That means the convenor is from government, we'll need at least one representative from private sector, one from civil society and maybe one representative from academia.  And if the regional convener is from civil society, as is the case presently, then we need three more representatives from government, private sector and from academia.  And these representations will be provided by the various subregions.  They will discuss among themselves and provide us with names on who is going to represent them on the African IGF.  And additionally we have also agreed that the Chair of IGF will be African ‑‑ with the country which will be hosting the African IGF.  So for this time, until the next meeting of the African IGF, Kenya representative Alice will be chairing the African IGF.


So now, this has been approved ‑‑


Then Muktar will reply about the questions, I believe there were some questions which you were asked on the African unicap, please give you a reply.

>> Thank you.  I like the way you approach things, personally.  But Africa does it.

Thank you very much.  One of the issues that has been raised actually is the link between the IGF activities, the AUC activities, the dot Africa activities and the CITMC ministry of conference.  I believe this has been raised by South African delegate.

Now, I just want to ensure you of one thing.  First of all, we in the African Union positioning ourselves in terms of serving you, serving the community and serving the member states.  And any issue you feel that this issue has to be brought to the attention of the ministers or to the head of states will be willing to take it over, providing that this issue represent a consensus within the community.

Indeed, the ministry of conference has adapted several projects and activities and resolutions with regard to the Internet Governance, dot Africa and so on, and it would be glad, one, to invite you for your input also to the next round ministry round table that will happen in ‑‑ so if you have any issue that you would like to raise to that meeting we'd be glad to take it over.

Second, in terms of the ministerial African Union Conference, that will take place in April 2012 in Sudan ‑‑ first week.  We'll be glad also to get your input and your contribution on any issue you feel that is appropriate to be presented to the ministers and further to the head of states.  That's what I can say with regard to this.  Other issues like North Africa, I'm sure you're all aware of that happening.  The cyber security are all aware of that happening and will be glad also to have the contributions with regard to those items.  I think this is the only question we have.  Thank you.

>> Thank you.  Now we'll have, continue our programme.  Would like to request the assembly if you want the African IGF to be launched now or want to wait till next year?  Who is for now?  Please, if you are for now, ‑‑


Who is not for now?  Okay.  You are overrun by the majority.  One person only.  Please tell us.

>> I think I would like ‑‑ and I'm not speaking for the SAIGF, and I'm not speaking for the ‑‑ agency.  I'm speaking in my individual capacity.  I think that the African IGF does indeed need to be undertaken and implemented, but I am a bit concerned that perhaps we have not done enough consultation among our various stakeholder groups.  And I think that there needs to be a bit more time allocated in terms of the consultation process and getting input to understand what it is that we're doing, why we're doing it and how they actually fit in to the process.  Thank you.

>> Thank you.  Actually congratulations for all of us for the launching of the African IGF.  And on this occasion, Egypt would like to propose hosting the common meeting for the African IGF in Cairo before the 7th meeting of the international conference.


>> Thank you, Egypt.  I think your offer, do you support it or propose other?  Yes?  That's okay?  Do you support it?  Or do you want to propose to us?

>> Okay, thank you, Macan.  I would like to say that Seneca supports the African IGF initiative for more participation and inclusiveness.  I'd also like to announce that Senegal will apply for the hosting of IGF 2014 Dakar.  This will be again a great opportunity for Africa to assess its progress set by this African IGF initiative and also to prepare our African review of our achievements towards 2015.  Thank you.


>> Thank you very much, Senegal, for proposing to host the global IGF in 2014.  I am sure AfriIGF will support and all will provide their support.  Before giving the floor, please can you come in with the ideas you are proposed now?  On the paper?

>> Thank you, no, I was just thinking that among this ‑‑ I mean within this multistakeholder approach and given what we've seen what is happening, the tremendous thing that is happening in Kenya and all over Africa, I think there's one particular community we need to target and that can contribute very substantively, the young African innovators that are doing a lot of great work in promoting and in giving visibility to what is happening in a positive manner in Africa.  So just to try to reach out to that particular community to the youth.  Andy take this opportunity to ac‑‑ and I take this opportunity to actually to you that the UNECA has an initiative called innovation prize for Africa which is targeting three categories, green technologies and health and security.  And it's been very amazing to see the number of innovations, the number of ideas that have been coming in to a point that we just expanded the deadline for another month.  So really to encourage all of you to spread the word in your countries and to make sure that all African countries, innovators from all African countries are participate in this.  We bring this with a foundation that is funded by brilliant Africans that have made their way in the sector.  And we look forward to get entries.  Two prizes will be awarded.  First one of 100,000 USD for the first winner and $50,000 for the second category.  So please spread the word the youth innovators in the continent.  Thanks.

>> Thank you, Makan.  Well, I would like to come back to that point touched by the representative of South Africa.  Well, really, consideration should be continuous process in our work.  And I would personally like to see this kind of recommendation together with the launch of African IGF.  We are facing a continuous process.  We have to keep being inclusive.  If we start now saying well we have everything, then tomorrow we will probably have some problems.

So really we have to remain inclusive and we have to continue our contributions to broaden our efforts.  Thank you.

>> Alice, you have the floor.

>> Thank you.  First of all, I'm very honored by the nomination to Chair the African IGF.  It's actually a great honour, so thank you very much.  But I think I agree that we do need national consultations.  We do need to also perhaps ‑‑ it is a lot of work that needs to be done before we really ‑‑ while launching the African IGF, I think it still need to evolve quite a lot. 

And I think to pick up on what was said here, I think the national processes are extremely important because some of the regional processes actually still quit fragile.  Some of them haven't started.  Like the north African one.  And so it's important to first consider how ‑‑ what framework?  Are we going to come up with a framework?  How do we help the national processes?  How do we strengthen them to then be able to gain legitimacy, to answer this, the African IGF has that legitimacy?

And then back to the multistakeholder model, we have to make sure that all stakeholders are involved at the different stages.  And again the definition of stakeholders is different depending on the various contexts, actually.  And while, for example, Kenya has become new constitution.  We are actually now required to have multistakeholder policy processes on all sectors.  And so it's something that we have to ‑‑ that becomes part of our policy processes.  So I wonder whether ‑‑ how we're going to define that so that then it applies to the different African countries.  So I think it's important to take these concerns into consideration and how, then, that fits to the African, the continental IGF.  And also how the regional IGFs are going to be represented at the global IGF.  So it's something that I think we will need to consider and I'm pleased that Egypt has offered to host the first meeting.  Perhaps that is where we begin to thresh out some of these issues.  Thank you.

>> Thank you very much, Alice.  Now we give the floor Katim?

>> Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman.  I think this is a very exciting development.

>> The chairperson is here.

>> All right, I think this is a very exciting development.  You know in the initial discussions about this whole idea, my feeling was that we should just develop ‑‑ we should have some mechanism for insuring that when we go to an IGF, a global IGF, we would be speaking with one voice and therefore or thereby lending greater credence to whatever it is that position is.  Having said that, what I'd like to say also is that maybe we should put the brakes a little bit on this people that we're moving.  One of the things, there was one time a few weeks ago I saw somebody send an email from their iPhone to say that this and that and that, and I said well, we ought to be doing things in a much more deliberative and reflective manner than just sending things on the fully.

And I think, as some people have pointed out here, even though jokingly, when you just off the cuff appoint somebody as the Chair, I think we're talking about something that's serious enough that we ought to give a little bit more process and little bit more thought, a little built more consultations to the issues before, number one.

Number two is the fact that I think all ‑‑ not the fact but at least my belief that we should also give serious consideration as somebody has suggested we do to the issue of social ability ‑‑ I'm all for Africa to host us for the African IGF.  But my worry is that they're going to set a wonderful job and they will be a hard job to follow.  The next question is who will be able to do what Egypt has done for us?

What I would have anticipated is instead of having a full blown African IGF that independently stands out from all the other IGFs and therefore becomes in and of itself an opportunity for a lot of Pomp and Circumstance and diplomatic ceremonies, let's do a lot of this consultations online.  And then once that's done, we can, amongst those of us part of the of the global IGF, set aside half of a day, get together with very little fanfare, follow online discourses and then thresh out what the African platform will be.  That will be a lot easier to sustain than having every year an independent meeting and then doing it for three years and then after the third year there is no money.  Thank you.

>> Thank you very much.

>> Thank you.  Although I respect all the opinions raised about having more time and consultation about having FGF, but with all due respect I disagree with that because from my point of view, the idea of creating African IGF is really to have a consultation, is to have one voice from Africa and the international IGF.  And the way to achieve this is bottom‑up, it's not top‑down.  It's know that African IGF will tell you what to do.  No, it's all the way around.  It's national and regional IGF will tell us, African IGF, what to do.  So during this one year, we can consult.  We can enhance.  We can work on all what you are talking about.  And when we go to Egypt in 2012, we will raise those issues and we'll have consensus about and will tell us "okay, this is our position."

But delaying the process, I don't see that it's really needed.  It's totally against the concept and the approach of IGF itself.  Thank you.

>> If you don't move also, the global is moving and others are moving.

>> Okay.  Quite unusually the young are going to say caution.  That's the word that I hear, caution.  We should not be in a rush to set up another institution or another Forum that once again going to be [Inaudible] which is not necessarily just to replicate what on the global level.  I am all for African IGF, yes.  But more importantly is the presence of the African IGF, what is it going to mean for the national IGFs?  What is it going to do for the regional IGFs?  Is it not going to take away from it?

And the second level is the issue of sustainability.  Yes, we set up the regional IGF.  How do we manage it?  What are exact goals apart from the terms of reference that has been done here?

And something that's been recurring, even with the people who agree that yes we should go ahead with the launch.  And I must say I'm not decided whether to launch or not launch.  But I'm very clear on this.  It's the fact that consultation, proper consultation has not occurred.  At least I was prior attending remotely and also physically two of the regional IGFs.  And the concept of an African IGF was not tabled.  We need to have proper consultation.  And in as much as, yes, we should go ahead right now, I would say again:  Caution.

>> Thank you very much.  I did raise my hand and I think a lot of the points have been mentioned, but I just wanted to talk about the TOIs that were circulated.

>> Please introduce yourself.

>> I'm from Malawi.  So in openness, I was thinking that I got the document that I've been really busy in this few particular days that I put in to make meaningful contribution to the draft that was given and probably that would be the same with everybody else who is here who got that document.  So just to echo the sentiments to say that for meaningful process that we are starting here, people need to fit into that document that we have here.  So it was just the timing factor.  A lot of things have been mentioned already.  Thanks.

>> Yes.  The document is ‑‑ evolutive document has put some ‑‑ he has suggested some amendments.  And this document, please give us your email, yes all of you.  We'll work towards finalizing, not do it here.  This is just establishing draft report for the idea of what we have said.  So these are evaluative and the final maybe in time.  Intel center?

>> Thank you.  I think that we can go around in circles on this issue.  What is very clear is that we do have some global imperatives.  And that historically our continent has been significantly absent when it comes to decision points on key areas that are defining really how I don't want to say sector, but how you could say the knowledge economy is evolving.  And that as quickly as possible we need to organise ourselves to be able to make useful contributions that reflect a wilder kind of consensus building.

I did not ‑‑ wider.  I do not believe that we will get much in postponing in the name of consultation have I think it is possible to launch it and then to say that the exact shape of the African IGF will be defined and give a timeline for consultation online.

I would also like to respond to those people who are worried about sustainability.  The shape of the Africa IGF does not men that it has to be ‑‑ in west African language we would say by course, that it has to be a face‑to‑face meeting.  It can be an online meeting.  We do not know how we are going to have the Africa IGF in 2020 when some much us maybe well not even be on the planet.  So I don't think that we have to pre‑empt it at this stage.  I think that if people have ‑‑ if nations have made that commitment to host, we move with it.  We know that it is going to make a difference.  That is the main thing.  Whether or not we organise ourselves in such a way that we make a difference.  Thank you.

>> One minute to end the session.  Please, the back?

>> Thank you, facilitate or, for taking me.  I'm from Rwanda, actually.  I have interest in both international IGF process and also east Africa IGF.  Also just proposals.  I can understand the argument about having to deal with the consultations and maybe to launch the AFIGF at this stage.  Can we actually have a time‑bound discussion?  So well take the proposal back to our respective national IGF and regional IGF, and we have position maybe in like two, three months, by the end of the year, and then online we could actually see if we can proceed with it?

So at least this way we make sure that we are not neglect the fact of multistakeholder approach and we should make sure that we have plenty concerned with the national idea and the national stakeholders and at the same time it's bounded so that if we ever did not answer, we'd miss the chance, basically and start processing maybe January 2012.  Thank you.

>> Thank you very much.  But the launch was approved by the majority, so whatever you do, it will be in the framework of the African IGF.

Please, the last ‑‑ okay, thank you very much.

>> The chair has recognized me, thank you.  I just want us to note that the IGF is a living organism.  It's an organism that's involved globally most important Africa.  And I'm really glad that Egypt has offered and the Chair so I think we should applaud this and work with it.  And I believe that we can use the technologies available to really ‑‑ whatever amendment we need to do.  So we must not halt the process.

And finally the whole idea of IGF is for Africa.  We must remember that the more we talk, the more we engage the better, for decisionmakers for all stakeholders.  We need opportunity to build more awareness and capacity.  We need it in Africa.  So this is to say I support the process and we must use all technology available to bring everybody if we need the same.  Thank you.

>> Remote participation first?  And we give the last floor to Salam.  Remote?

>> Thank you.  A question from someone Ochandi Nairobi.  He's asking how does the AAFIGF plan to build capacity among young Africans concerning IGF issues and help incorporate the voices and participation of young Africans in IGF discussions?

>> You want to answer?

>> Yes.  Pascal from ‑‑ I just want to announce that we are planning to organise the first African summer school on Internet Governance with division of summer school on Internet Governance ‑‑

>> Nnenna, answer, please?

>> NNENNA NWAKANMA: I think that's a very valid question.  The AFIGF is meaningless unless it supports and increases multistakeholder Internet Governance activity within a country.  There is no need setting up an AIGIF up less it makes meaning at home.  I am afraid that people who are here who are sitting here launching AIGIF have not participated at all.  And that is the challenge.  I have personally written this document and encouraged to come here and tell ourselves that our participation in Nairobi's meaningless if you have not done anything at home.  So from wherever you come, you should go home and ask what has happened in my place? 

I'm here reporting for West Africa IGF, and there is no Nigerian IGF.  There is no ‑‑ there is no Malian IGF.  So these are the issues.  Are we launching AIGIF to support our national initiatives?  If it is yes ‑‑ if not ‑‑ oh la la.  The answer is this.  The only reason we are launching AFIGF is to support national Internet Governance initiatives to give all the capacity needed to the young people.  There is no AFIGF at ICA.  There is no AFIGF at AU.  But there is AFIGF in all 54 African countries.  Thank you.

>> The last speaker from Nigeria?

>> Thank you for this.  We first of all would start from when the two voices didn't say we should have national IFG.  Didn't say we should do this.  But this evaluation to support it.  I would take this home and then we will work things out.  And then from now, national IGF now spring off from there.  Now as we are launching this here today, it is also ‑‑ it will encourage others.  There are some other things here especially we have other things which are very essential look at it.  Organisation of policies of the AUC or African Union how are we going to evaluate, get feedback into it. 

Which another thing is capacity in management.  Most countries, Kenya, the same Nigeria, there are a lot of diverse advertise which we need to merge.  And this is how are we going to do it?  These are the issues that we have got to concern.  How the IGF will now consider the issues.  So when we lock at these issues which are being discussed on global level we will not compare them to our environment.  So I believe that we should not ‑‑ this should continue as well from here and will evolve as we go.  Thank you.

>> Thank you, at least you have taken two decisions here.  The first one is the launch of African IGF.  It is done.  The second one is the Egypt's proposal to host the next African IGF before the global IGF.  So now to conclude, chairperson of course will be supported by the five continents and three other members of the bureau representative will be designated buy the various.  Now before giving the floor to the chairperson to close the meeting, I give the floor to the African Union commission to say a few words.

>> Thank you, I must confirm that it was really pleasure to be with you.  And now I start knowing and liking most of you.  What has been said here is I share most of the concern in terms of implementing or launching right away the IGF and also to continue the inclusive consultation processes.  Nothing is perfect at the beginning.  And somewhere we have to start.  I think this is a start.  But is not the end.  And we should continue to improve it and to shape it as our baby, as our feature Forum to be, to use it.  I would like again to reiterate that the African union will listen to the community.  We will be listening, yes, indeed.  And I challenge anybody who would go over that.

>> Thank you.

>> We will be listening to the community.  And we will be inclusive with the community.  And we will continue as in the past to listen to the community.

Our idea is to provide the leadership, the political leadership, our issue is to bring your issues and concerns to the head of states and well do that.

With that, I would like to congratulate you for the launch of the African IGF.  And I look forward again to work with you.  And I'm listening again.  Thank you very much.


>> Thank you.  Please put your name and your email in the list which is being circulated if you want to receive further information for the African IGF because we don't have the email address of all of you.

Now we'll give the floor to the chairperson of the African IGF to conclude and close the meeting.

>> Alice:  Thank you very much.  I think as the anointed but not appointed Chair ‑‑


‑‑ I'd like to say thank you.  And also to perhaps mention that the Chairing of the African IGF should also be an issue that is discussed during the online consultation that we consult about.  And so while I accept to coordinate this process, I think it must be something that we consider in terms of what's the role of the Chair.  Why?  Because these documents says that the Chair will come from the country that is hosting the African IGF.  Is Kenya hosting the African IGF?  Yes.  Hosting the launch, yes.  So it's something that I think we really want to consider as part of the consultations, as well.

And another thing is thanking Egypt for offering to host the African IGF.  And I hope this will encourage you before you host the African IGF to have held your own African IGF with the processes and the framework and mechanisms that would have been agreed upon.

My other concern would be anointed Chair would be in terms of really considering seriously the sustainability of it.  Because having chaired and having hosted the global IGF this year, one of the greatest challenges has been that sustainability, financial support.  And in fact it's something that I keep talking about over and over in that there's a lot of support for the IGF globally as a very important Forum where we can discuss sometimes very sensitive political issues Internet Governance obviously because it's not a policy making decision, but at the same time it does need support.  And if you're going to be having governments like my government hosted this meeting.  The bulk of it.  Nearly 95 percent of the budget came from the government.  If other stakeholders are not going to be putting money where their mouths are, then it's not going to be sustainable.  And so we need to seriously think about that as we talk about the launching of the African IGF.  We did not want to develop yet another institution that dies within a year or so.

We also have to really seriously consider what the relevance is in terms of is it going to be an African IGF that strengthens the national IGFs that encourages national IGFs?  So those are some of the questions that we I think need to have to begin consider before we have the first meeting in Egypt.  Thank you very much.


Oh, yes, I was told I have to close the meeting.  So I declare the meeting closed.  Thank you very much.