After so many years of advocacy the Kenyan government announced that they are serious with Free and Open Source Software (FOSS) according to the article in the Business Daily of 9 September 2012. This is great victory for the FOSS advocates and evangelists that started their combined efforts in the East African Center for Open Source Software, a project started by the experts of MIS4D.
According to the article, Dr Katherine Getao, the ICT secretary at the directorate of e-Government, said “Initially we expect this to reduce the government expenditure by 20 per cent but the bigger impact will be in three years time when we anticipate the savings will be up to 80 per cent,”
Although the cost saving are important, the main victory is for the software industry in Kenya and Africa at large. The move is expected to hurt the sales of copyrighted software vendors but boost local software developers who can now start to show that they can develop services and software without being hindered by the licenses of proprietary software products.
We are all waiting for one of the most mature economies in Africa to start a large-scale implementation of Open Source Software. What a big step!