Masqat , e-Media:
Saudi Arabia reaped four GCC e-government awards. The event was held in conjunction with the GCC 1st e-Government Conference in Masqat. Yesser’s Government Service Bus (GSB) ranked the first position as the best e-government project. Eng. Ali bin Saleh Al-Soma, Yesser Director General, received the award from the event sponsor H.E. Ahmed bin Abdul Nabi Makki, Omani minister of national economy, vice chairman of the Financial Affairs and Power Resources.
In the award’s e-economics component, Saudi Arabia “SADAD” payment system ranked the first position. The award was received by Abdul Malik Al-Sheikh, executive director of SADAD payment system. Jeddah Municipality portal ranked the second position for the best electronic content. The award was received by Dr. Arwa Al-A’ma, assistant commissioner of Jeddah Municipality. The Saudi project for e-exchange of information received a recognition award.
Eng. Ali bin Saleh Al-Soma, Director General of Yesser emphasized that the achievements of Saudi Arabia at the GCC level reflect the efforts made by various government sectors to meet the desire of KSA leadership for more easier and readily accessible services to individuals and business sector. He described the awards as coronation of a lot of efforts deployed by the winning agencies to ensure transition to e-government. The successful projects will be models for emulation within KSA and even at the GCC level.
Al-Soma added that the winning projects represent a sample of pioneering projects at KSA level that deserve the GCC award.
Fatima Salim, manager of quality and excellence assurance, chief of the award organizing team, said 69 electronic projects participated in the contest. The jury was composed of GCC IT experts in addition to two UN experts lead by the chairman of the IT Community Summit Award.
The conference recommendations included establishing practical multilevel frameworks in various areas for exchange of regional expertise and access to the best world practices. For example: arranging similar conferences, workshops and GCC e-government award on regular basis, practical models derived from winning projects shall be circulated, in addition to creating an e-government section within the GCC website content.
Another recommendation provides for reinforcement of cooperation among GCC countries to review international e-government indicators and improve the ranking of GCC in these indicators while establishing an GCC indicator should be considered in addition to placing GCC e-government agencies and programs on the world advancement map in the areas of cognition in general and electronic cognition in particular.
In the area of infrastructure and delivery of services, the conference recommends legislations and rules be enacted to ensure IT and Communications are included in all functions and operations of the public, private sectors and NGO organizations. It should be taken into consideration during strategic planning. Incentives shall be created to encourage public and private sectors and NGOs utilize e-government services. In the area of IT capacity building from the community perspective, the conference stressed the need to boost investment in the human capital in the areas of relevance to the digital community, specially e-government services, new technologies, e-content etc… through establishing of partnerships with higher education institutions.