Author: Madara Ogot, CEO of the UbuntuNet Alliance.
During the UbuntuNet Connect Conference in Kampala, Uganda, on October 27, 2023, the Alliance recognized the founder Chief Executive Officers of Africa’s Regional Research and Education Networks (RENs). The honorees included the Alliance’s Dr. FF Tusu Tusubira, Dr. Boubakar Barry of the West and Central Africa Research and Education Network (WACREN), and Dr. Yousef Tourman of the Arab States Research and Education Network (ASREN).
Before the awards ceremony, the founders of Africa’s RENs took part in a panel discussion moderated by Prof. Madara Ogot, the CEO of the Alliance. During the discussion, they traced the origins of the RENs, which were established with the strong support of the Association of African Universities as early as 2003. The RENs were also funded with substantial resources from the European Union through the Africa Connect Programme, which began in 2011. Currently, the RENs are in their third funding phase, Africa Connect 3, which will conclude in 2024.
After the panel session, each CEO received a glass trophy with an inscription that read in part,
“Pioneers Award – In recognition of your innovative spirit, pioneering contributions and a trailblazer in the development of Research and Education Networks.”
The Alliance’s Board of Trustees member Eng Musa Musazi presented the awards.