Namibia becomes first Southern Africa to conduct Internet Development Assessment
Namibia becomes first Southern Africa to conduct Internet Development Assessment

Namibia becomes first Southern Africa to conduct Internet Development Assessment

On the 27th of June 2023, the official launch of the national assessment took place. The served as a key milestone that highlighted Namibia as the first Southern African country to embark on the national Internet Universality Indicators assessment. Furthermore, launch aimed at informing key stakeholders in Namibia as well as the general public about this important milestone.

The national assessment was officiated by key government officials who highlighted the national needs in shaping the development of technology policy and development that the assessment is anticipating to shape.

Officiating at the launch, Deputy Minister of ICT, Honourable Emma Theofelus welcomed the national assessment saying “With this launch today, we are telling our fellow UN member nations that we found the Internet Universality Assessment Framework as fit for purpose and we embrace it in sharing good practices by voluntarily assessing the internet in Namibia across various cross cutting issues at our national level.”
She further pivoted the results of this national assessment to contribute amongst others, present a comprehensive and substantive understanding of the national Internet environment and policies, assess our policies alignment to UNESCO’s R.O.A.M. principles and their contribution to sustainable development, Develop policy recommendations and practical initiatives that will enable Namibia to improve its Internet ecosystem particularly as frontier ICTs evolve.

Finally, honorable Theofelus highlighted efforts in the country towards digitalization saying, “as a country, we know we have been making significant steps regarding the policy development of technology and in doing that we are all guided by numerous international instruments. To date a number of policies are in place and various others such as the National Digital Strategy, Cybercrime and Data protection laws are in draft format.”

Honourable Emma Theofelus, Deputy Minister of ICT, with Dignitaries and Experts in Technology at the launch of the event.

On his part, in a speech delivered on his behalf by Education Officer Erens Ngunovandu, UNESCO Head of Office in Windhoek, Djaffar Moussa Elkhadhum  positioned the assessment saying “The Internet as a social phenomenon has rapidly become a public service that facilitates our daily lives. Since Artificial Intelligence (AI) and other emerging technologies have been evolving within the internet ecosystem, it has become increasingly important to assess how we engage and govern it.

He further assured that UNESCO believes that the Internet Universality ROAM principles can serve as a framework to help shape the design, application, and governance of AI.


UNESCO global office officials on their turn highlighted the increase use of the ROAM-X framework uptake in Africa saying that, while Namibia is the first in southern Africa to carry out his assessment, 15 other African countries are currently endeavoring these national assessments, while the assessment is also takin place in 20 other countries in countries elsewhere around the world. highlights the increased uptake and use of the Framework across the globe.


On her behalf, project manager and lead researcher, Nashilongo Gervasius lauded the diverse Namibian stakeholders for assisting this national assessment highlighting the assistance being receiving in reaching data not available within the public reach but also in anticipating public use and uptake of the national report when finalized.  She further invited stakeholders in attendance to be part of the assessment process.


In positioning the probable scenario of ICT development in the country, the launch event was highlighted by a panel discussion moderated by veteran broadcaster Ricardo Goagoseb with the Executive Director in the Ministry of ICT, Dr Audrin Mate as  panelist  joined by the Dean of the Faculty of Informatics and Computing at NUST, Professor Fungai Bhunu Shava  and Ms Grace Githaiga, Convenor of kICTAnet in Kenya who joined virtually not only to  share the lessons learned in the Kenya assessment of 2015 but also relaying that country’s updated assessment in that country’s successful deployment of technology across sectors.

The launch of the national assessment on Internet Universality Indicators took place at the Namibia University of Science and Technology (NUST) given the close partnership between ISOC and NUST and was attended by 52 attendees, who are 26 male and 26 female, representing various stakeholders suchas government, academia, civil society, regulator, private sector, technical community and international government organization.

Some of the stakeholder representatives attending the launch of the Namibia ROAM-X launch. NUST, HTTPS Building, June, 2023

Media Coverage

MICT Social Media, 27 June 2023

ISOC Namibia, Launch Event Recording available on YouTube via