Microsoft to help boost Congo media tech capacities

By Issa Sikiti da Silva, in Kinshasa, DR Congo

Congo-Brazzaville’s under-resourced and ill-equipped media is set to get a lifeline from global technology giant Microsoft to boost its technology capacities and position themselves for the race of the digital revolution.

This has emerged during the recent visit in this Central African nation by Yvonne Bettkober, Microsoft executive director for Africa-Indian Ocean and New Caledonia.

Despite undergoing tremendous changes in the last decade, the Association for the Development of Education in Africa (ADEA) said Africa media remains constrained by acute problems such as lack of financial, human and material resources, poor ownership structure, weak financial base, low quality staff (particularly journalists), lack of access to information, and conflict with authorities.

Bettkober told the press: "Journalism requires ongoing training. Therefore, it is essential to strengthen the professional and technological knowledge of journalists to help them continue playing their role of educating and informing the Congolese people."

ICT teacher Euloge Samba told Biztechafrica: “This is the kind of help that news organisations are looking for. The media in this continent continues to face serious problems it faced in the last century. Just walk in newsrooms and you will see how these challenges will hit you in the face. Why should two or three journalists share one computer, while three more are waiting their turn to start working? Sometimes there is no internet and journalists go out to work in an internet café. But the worst of all, it’s low pay that really shocks,” Samba said.

 

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