Matarr Touray, a senior official of the Public Utilities Regulatory Authority (PURA) said The Gambia has done quite well in data cost reduction even though it is still expensive for average Gambians. Touyray was speaking at the “Who is Who in Tech” event organized by PointClick Technologies and its partners over the weekend.
“The Gambia has done quite well in data cost, “ he said. The data cost from a standard home connection has come down by about 50%. But is still too prohibited for an average Gambian who has an income of $50.”
In addressing some of the problems faced by technology in The Gambia, PointClick Technology and its partners organized a networking event to bring together both Gambians at home and in the diaspora to network and address issues hindering the advancement of technology in The Gambia.
Malick Khan, CEO of PointClick, shared with The Chronicle the reason behind the “Who is Who in Tech” networking event. “It was organized to connect The Gambians in the diaspora that are in technology with the local ecosystem technology entrepreneurs. It is important that we all know who we are, that when we can engage and potentially work together in solving some of the most challenging problems in this country.”
Highlighting the issues affecting the rapid advancement of technology in the country, Khan said connectivity should be affordable to all. “The connectivity is not out there for everybody to reach because of the cost, it should be minimised a little bit so that everybody can afford it. Make it to be more stable and it 24 hours access…if you have a problem you don’t have to wait until Monday because the companies are not working on a weekend. Those are some of the small gaps that need adjustments.”
The event was attended by both Gambians at home and the diaspora in the field of technology.
Joseph Jasseh, a Gambian working at Microsoft said it’s everyone’s responsibility to figure out how to make things better in The Gambia as far technology is concerned.
“We are all working for companies in the West, doing amazing things, but when we come back home, nothing seems to be working. It is our responsibility to figure out how do we help make things better.”
“Talking of that, in January we are launching what we call The Gambia Technology Advisory Council. This is going to be a movement to figure out how do we bring all the people in tech in The Gambia and the diaspora to figure out how we provide guidance, compliances, best practices, but also how to partner with the Ministry of Information.”
The “Who is Who in Tech” event is expected to be an annual event to create a platform to network, invest, build and connect Gambians from all over the world through technology.