Visit of Assistant Director-General for Communication and Information in Mozambique
The Assistant Director-General for Communication and Information of UNESCO, Mr Abdul Waheed Khan, visited Mozambique 22 and 23 August.
He visited two of the Community Multimedia Centres (CMCs) that form part of the UNESCO Scale-Up Initiative in Mozambique. At the Xinavane and Manhiça CMCs, around 100 km north of Maputo, he met with CMC managers, committee members, volunteer journalists and IT trainers, as well as representatives from the local partner associations.
Mr Khan was able to see for himself how the CMCs are benefiting their local communities, from their contribution to areas such as health, education and agriculture to their social role within the community. Challenges are not lacking, but as Mr Khan said: "It is impressive to see how much can be achieved with such relatively few resources."
Mr Khan also attended the launch of the Annual Report on Press Freedom produced by the Mozambique chapter of the Media Institute of Southern Africa and paid a courtesy visit to the UN Resident Coordinator, Mr Ndolamb Ngokwey, to exchange views about the progress of the Delivering as One Programme and express UNESCO´s commitment to the One UN.
The CMC Scale-Up Initiative was launched in December 2003 during the first phase of the World Summit on the Information Society, in Geneva, by Mr Koïchiro Matsuura, Director-General of UNESCO, Mr Walter Fust, Director General of the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC), Mr Amadou Toumani Touré, President of Mali, Mr Joaquim Chissano, President of Mozambique and Mr Abdoulaye Wade, President of Senegal The Scale-Up Initiative falls within the framework of the Declaration of Principles and Plan of Action of the World Summit on the Information Society. It also complies with the goals of the New Partnership for Africa Development (NEPAD) that promotes new information technologies as one of the key development agents.
UNESCO grants high priority to the reinforcement of communication and information at the community level and offers basic tools to foster and manage communal development and change.,. It has been proven that CMCs can help reduce the digital gap by combining proximity radio, Internet and associated technologies, and open the way towards an active participation in the knowledge society.
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