Chapter Four

Digital Government

Everybody loves progress but nobody likes the pain of change, the current analogue approach to governance can never birth the future we want – Never! – Simi Fajemirokun

e-Government: Big Opportunities to Scale Service Delivery in Africa

The latest UN report on e-governance is not a good read for Africa. According to the report, only four of fifty-four African countries scored above the world average EGDI (E-Government Development Index) of 0.55, with fourteen African countries scoring a paltry 0.25. The report noted that these fourteen countries were unlikely to allocate resources to e-government development considering other pressing challenges. Africa averaged 0.3433, an improvement, but still a long way from the numbers of other continents. Europe led the way with 0.7727. Denmark, Australia and the Republic of Korea led the EGDI, scoring 0.9150, 0.9053 and 0.9010, respectively. Mauritius ranked 66th in the world with 0.6678 to top the African ranking. This was followed by South Africa at 68th with 0.6618; Tunisia was ranked 80th with 0.6254 to complete Africa’s top three. Seychelles ranked at 83th with 0.6163, the only other African country to score above the global average.

Others were Ghana at 101 with 0.5390; Morocco at 110 with 0.5214; Egypt at 114 with 0.4880; Rwanda at 120 with 0.4590; Namibia at 121 with 0.4554; and Kenya at 122 with 0.4541 complete Africa’s top ten ranked countries. Countries like Gabon, Botswana, Algeria, Zambia, Uganda, Cameroon, Togo, Tanzania, Libya, Eswatini were in Africa’s top twenty, but fell in the range of 125 to 141 in global rankings. Nigeria, Africa’s largest economy, ranked 21 in Africa and 143 in the world with an abysmal 0.3807 EGDI. Of the ten least ranked countries, only Yemen is not an African country. South Sudan, Niger and Somalia listed at 191, 192 and 193 respectively, led the ranking from the bottom. The report notes that:​ There is a positive correlation between the country’s income level and its e-government ranking. High-income countries have very high or high EGDI scores. This is not universal, however. Twenty-two upper middle-income and 39 lower-middle income countries have EGDI scores below the global EGDI average and 10 countries in the lower middle-income group have scores above the global EGDI average. The lower income countries, on the other hand, continue to lag due to relatively low level of development of all Index’s components.

Political Communication in The World of Twitter

If you hire a communication strategist who tells you “elections are not won on social media” fire him or her before he or she does more damage! Elections are not won on social media sounds like a contrarian and cool thing to say, but it does not stand well against reason and the prevailing reality. It is one of those things that are true on paper but incorrect in reality. In a connected world where everyone is in a war for everyone’s attention, being absent or ignoring your narrative because you think social media is not important would prove costly.