KPK announced new digital policy for tribal districts

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Islamabad (Web Desk) The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government announced its digital policy for the next five years (2018-23) detailing measures for financial inclusion and equitable digital dividends for women and marginal communities.
With the announcement of the policy, KP has emerged as the only province in Pakistan to have a digital policy which focuses on four areas of access, governance, economy and skills. The policy was unveiled at a ceremony here at the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa House.
KP Finance Minister Taimur Saleem Jhagra was the chief guest on the occasion while Special Assistant to Chief Minister on IT Kamran Bangash, MD KPIT Board Dr Shahbaz Khan, Milanda Good of the World Bank, Ali Naseer of Jazz briefed the participants about salient features of the policy.
Stresses increased public-private partnership for KP’s digital transformation
The policy also specifically stresses on provision of digital access to the people of tribal districts (defunct Fata) otherwise considered among the most backward areas of the country. It also focuses on increased public-private partnership for facilitating digital transformation of the province.
KP Finance Minister Taimur Saleem Jhagra regretted that internet was introduced in the province in 1995 but the whole work of the government organisations was still conducted through the old system of papers and files. He regretted that sticking to that obsolete system was a waste of both time and resources and also hampered service delivery.
On the other hand, he pointed out, almost all government functionaries were utilising their private email addresses for any public communication. This practice, he pointed out, not only mixed private and public affairs but also created security risks. However, the finance minister vowed to transform the province and make a visible difference.
Special Assistant to Chief Minister on IT Kamran Bangash said that though the digital policy was not part of the 100 days initiative of the PTI programme but in view of the need of the hour it had been prepared in less than 100 days.
He said all the stakeholders were taken on board in formulation of the policy. He said it was based on ground realities and provided for achieving realistic goals. However, he added, the government was always open to any suggestion for its improvement and achieving its targets in the larger interest of the people of the province.
He said the newly-merged districts were far behind from the other parts of the country in digital infrastructure while on the other hand the whole province was endowed with great potential of youth that’s why the policy provided for optimum utilisation of this resource.
Addressing on the occasion, the Country Director World Bank Pakistan, Milenda Good appreciated the initiative of the KP government and assured that World Bank would always be there to contribute to its success.

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