Tujoromajo Kasuto

President Hage G. Geingob has appointed an eight-member Task Force to harness opportunities in the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR).

The Office of the Presidency in a media release says the inception of the Task Force is “informed by the fact that the world has undergone a paradigm shift with the convergence of technologies, requiring deeper understanding of the disruptive impact of 4IR on society. In establishing the Task Force, President Geingob is also fulfilling a commitment made during the 2021 State of the Nation Address.”

“The 4IR Task Force is comprised of members drawn from academia, the private sector and civil society and will also draw on expertise from within key Government Offices, Ministries and Agencies.”

The work of the Task Force is pro-bono and the members will serve for a year, from 1 July 2021 until 30 June 2022.

Chaired by University of Namibia (Unam), Pro-Vice Chancellor, Anicia Peters, it comprises Namibia University of Science and Technology (NUST), Vice Chancellor, Erold Naomab; Senior Economist at Bank of Namibia (BON), Grace Hamauka; SME Executive at Namibia Investment Promotion and Development Board (NIPDB), Dino Balloti; Unam, Vice Chancellor, Kenneth Matengu; Internet Society of Namibia’s Nashilongo Gervasius; University of Johannesburg Vice Chancellor, Tshilidzi Marwala, and lastly, Deloitte’s Africa and Emerging Markets Managing Director, Martyn Davies.

“The establishment of a 4IR Task Force is set out under the Economic Advancement Pillar of the Harambee Prosperity Plan II. This Task Force will be required to conduct a country assessment to determine the readiness of Namibia for 4IR and make recommendations towards a coordinated and coherent policy and legislative framework. Moreover, the Task Force should assist Government in harnessing the full potential presented by the confluence of technologies for the Future of Work and the socio-economic development of Namibia.” The appointment letter to members of the Task Force reads.

Furthermore, Geingob expresses his “confidence and trust in the ability, diligence and professionalism with which the members of the Task Force will execute this important national undertaking and within the available time-frame of 12 months”.

In line with the World Economic Forum (WEF), the 4IR represents a crucial innovation.