The DUO team were recently at the Cape Town International Convention centre to manage the live webinar of the first ever Huawei Safe City Africa Summit. More than 400 delegates from industry and government from across the continent were in attendance to share insight, development trends and global success stories on public safety in cities.

The webinar allowed for invited delegates who were unable to attend, as well as other viewers targeted via a social media advertising campaign – also run by DUO – to watch the presentations of select speakers live.

At the Summit, Siyabonga Cwele, South Africa’s Minister of Telecommunications and Postal Services and Mmamoloko Kubayi, South Africa’s Chairperson of Telecommunications and Postal Service Committee  both delivered speeches acknowledging the need for Technology and Innovation in cities.

The two-day Summit was testimonial that governments can be agents of change and that many regions around the world are struggling with issues such as crime, poverty, poor infrastructure and much more. The Summit provided practical solutions to help governments deliver a Safe and Smart city to citizens.

The most important take away from the Summit was encouraging the development of better connected, resource-efficient and ‘smart cities’ in urban areas through partnering with the private-sector and establishing better communications and networks.

During the Summit it was announced that Tshwane and the city of Ekurhuleni in South Africa was well on their way to adopting a Safe and Smart city. Project leaders from many countries including Madagascar, Kenya, Republic of Trinidad and Tobago, and the United Kingdom have had only success stories to share on the use of ICT to enhance public safety in their cities.

Countries worldwide are actively formulating plans for the development of safe and smart cities to seize new opportunities generated by global urbanisation.

Sadly, there still remains a digital divide in our country, barriers to adoption include a lack of access to computers and internet being far too expensive for our citizens. A recent article highlights just how  the South African government, regulator and parastatals have put the brakes on ICT.

To increase ICT enabled innovation in the country, the private sector will have to play a primary role, and partner with the government, in the adoption of safe and smart city solutions.

More videos of presentations made from the Huawei Safe City Africa Summit can be viewed on the Huawei Enterprise South Africa Facebook page.

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