The Kenyan government is all set to unveil its Open Data initiative, an aim at opening up it’s repositories of varied datasets to the public for public consumption and us.
This set us thinking on what the current state of e-governance/e-government across Africa. There are two different terms used, e-Governance and e-Government, and without getting into the technical details of what each is, suffice it to say that basically both have to do with the use of ICT to promote more efficient and effective government, facilitate accessibility of government services, allow greater public access to information and make governments more accountable to citizens.
e-Gov has been seen to be of particular interest in ICT4D especially in Africa. However, the uniqueness of the challenges facing such efforts in various countries are not to be winked at.
The United Nations, through it’s Public Administration Program, has a really comprehensive database on this subject. We can use this data to draw some interesting highlights:
According to the results from the 2010 survey, Tunisia, Mauritius and Egypt represent the top three ranked in terms of e-government on an Africa-wide ranking. Putting this in a global context: the top ranked African country, Tunisia, ranks 66th out of 184, Mauritius ranks 77th, and Egypt ranks 86th.
Within the different regions the top three in order in each region are as follows:
- Eastern Africa: Mauritius, Seychelles, Kenya
- Central Africa: Gabon, Sao Tome and Principe, Angola
- Northern Africa: Tunisia, Egypt, Libyan Arab Jamahiriya
- Southern Africa: South Africa, Botswana, Lesotho
- Western Africa: Cape Verde, Ivory Coast, Ghana