MoAF tops the 3rd national website competition
For the second consecutive year, the ministry of agriculture and forestry was declared as the winner of the third national website competition which was conducted by the Department of Information Technology and Telecom under the Ministry of Information and Communications.
The declaration of result was done last Tuesday coinciding with the World Telecommunications and Information Society Day (WTISD).
Although the websites for the ministry is not very new, Chief ICT Officer of Ministry of Agriculture and Forests Keshav Raj Gurung said that the reason for winning the websites is that their websites is the one which is very active and transparent because they updates all the time when there are any updates. This has been quite of many years.
“Our website is very secure and active. There was a time before that so many websites are been hacked but our website doesn’t get hacked,” said Keshav.
According to the press release from MoIC, the purpose of observing the day, WTISD was to help raise awareness of the possibilities that the use of the internet and other information and communication technologies (ICT) can bring societies and economies, as well as of ways to bridge the digital divide.
Secretary for Ministry of Information and Communication Dasho Kinley Dorji, said that the day is very important and it is not just telecom, its world information society which means telecom, media and even culture.
The secretary said that while talking about informed society, even our government has a vision on this particular theme that Bhutan’s aspiration to become a knowledge society.
“So on this day, it’s not only celebrating but it is also important to think of what needs to be done and needs to think how technology should serve everyone in the society,” Dasho Kinley Dorji added.
He said that the needs to emphasizing only needs to think of what we are doing, but it is very important to think that what we are not doing and what needs to do.
“Getting access to information and knowledge using technology and technological awareness in skill level, Bhutan is relatively low, so we have much to do,” reiterated the Secretary.
As a part of the celebration, the ministry started an incentive to recognized ICT champion every year during the WTISD celebration and it was also decided to award prizes for third website competition winners on the same day this year. However, due to poor turnout of nominations, the ICT Champion award was postponed to 22nd June, 2016. The nominations are still open and will close on 3rd June.
Meanwhile, a total of 126 websites were registered in the first round of evaluation but four were eliminated from the list due to its inconsistent uptime and duplicity. Fourteen private firms voluntar- ily registered their websites for evaluation, six less in comparison to its preceding competition.
The press release stated that the evaluation of websites was carried out to encourage agencies to use their websites as a major channel for sharing information and services. Besides that it is also to ensure regular updates and enhancement is made to websites also to increase the utility of websites for our citizens and to improve public delivery.
The evaluation were carried out by eight independent evaluators consisting of experienced ICT personnel from domestic private IT firms and ISPs to ensure that the evaluators are protected their individual ratings have been kept confidential.
The actual evaluation was carried out in three rounds where each round was conducted for a period of approximately one and half months. The entire duration of the competition was for approximately nine months.
The press release further stated that over the time from the first assessment to second and now the third assessment, the general observations are that the frequency of information being uploaded and the currency of information on the sites have improved. The overall websites downtime has also decreased. However, there has not been much improvement in the design and the value additional features of the websites.
Only few agencies such as national council, national assembly of Bhutan and royal civil servant commission has revamped their websites after the initiation of this competition. Other agencies still need to work on the authenticity and completeness of the information provided on their websites.
Meanwhile, the prizes for the top three website were award with an ipad Air 2, Samsung Galaxy Tab A and 3G data card along with the prepaid voucher card worth of Nu. 2,350 respectively and was awarded by Secretary of MoIC.