The International Telecommunications Union (ITU) has announced the appointment of Dr. Umar Saif to the Digital Innovation Board of the Innovation and Entrepreneurship Alliance for Digital Development.

Dr. Umar Saif is currently serving as Pakistan’s Federal Minister for Information Technology & Telecommunication.
The alliance was set up to bridge the global digital innovation divide and to support ITU members as they work towards an equitable digital future.

The Pakistan’s IT & Telecom Minister joins 17 other eminent individuals, who have all been nominated in their personal capacity and based on their track record in innovation, and will provide strategic guidance, expertise and advocacy for the alliance’s goals and vision.

The Alliance establishes the Digital Innovation Board to provide strategic guidance, expertise, and advocacy regarding its mission of building critical local enablers and fostering innovation and entrepreneurship in digital development, to create a more inclusive and equitable digital future for all.

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As the Alliance is accelerating innovation capacity and creating linkages at the national, regional, and global level, the Board will advance the efforts of the Alliance at the global stage, leading the dialogue on fostering innovation and entrepreneurship in digital development with relevant stakeholders and prospective partners, including UN agencies, governments, and private sector.

The Digital Innovation Board was established to provide strategic guidance, expertise, and advocacy regarding its mission of building critical local enablers and fostering innovation and entrepreneurship in digital development, to create a more inclusive and equitable digital future for all.

This accomplished group brings a wealth of personal expertise, leadership, and dedication to drive forward the Alliance’s collective vision of an equitable and sustainable digital future for all.

The Director of the Telecommunication Development Bureau (BDT), Dr. Cosmas Luckyson Zavazava will be one of the two Co-Chairs of the Digital Innovation Board, and the second Co-Chair will be nominated during the first Board Meeting.

The Innovation and Entrepreneurship Alliance for Digital Development initiated by the BDT Director will build critical local enablers to lead in the changing digital environment.

It will also enable BDT to develop new organizational and human excellence capabilities, deliver new products and services for ITU Membership and strengthen the engagement of the private sector and academia in the critical work of BDT.

Eighteen distinguished individuals were selected to serve as members of the Digital Innovation Board based on their expression of interest and a nomination process.

The International Telecommunication Union (ITU) is the United Nations specialized agency for information and communication technologies – ICTs.

Founded in 1865 to facilitate international connectivity in communications networks, we allocate global radio spectrum and satellite orbits, develop the technical standards that ensure networks and technologies seamlessly interconnect, and strive to improve access to ICTs to underserved communities worldwide. Every time you make a phone call via the mobile, access the Internet or send an email, you are benefitting from the work of ITU.



1. H.E. Dr. Umar Saif Federal Minister for Information Technology & Telecommunication (MoITT) Islamic Republic of Pakistan.

2. H.E. Ms. Enkelejda Muçaj Albania Deputy Minister Ministry of Infrastructure and Energy.

3. H.E. Mr. Mohamed bin Thamir Al Kaabi Bahrain Minister Ministry of Transportation and Telecommunications

4. Mr. Nestor Rios Rivero Bolivia National Executive Director Regulatory Authority for Telecommunications and Transportation (ATT).

5. Mr. Carlos Baigorri Brazil President National Telecommunications Agency (Anatel).

6. Dr. Li Tian China Head of Standards Strategy of ZTE & Vice-President of China Association for Standardization ZTE Corporation.

7. Mr. Bocar Ba Cross- regional CEO SAMENA Telecommunications Council.

8. Mr. Eng. Hossam El-Gamal Egypt Executive President National Telecom Regulatory Authority (NTRA).

9. H.E. Ms. Laurence Ndong Gabon Minister & Government Spokesperson Ministry of Communication and Media.

10. H.E. Dr. Neeraj Mittal India Secretary of the Department of Telecommunications (Vice-Minister) Ministry of Communications.

11. H.E. Mr. Hiroshi Yoshida Japan Vice-Minister Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications.

12. H.E. Mr. Eliud O. Owalo Kenya Cabinet Secretary (Minister) Ministry of Information, Communications, and the Digital Economy.

13. Mr. Daud Suleman Malawi Director-General Malawi Communication Regulatory Authority.

14. H.E. Mr. Bosun Tijani Nigeria Minister Ministry of Communication and Digital Economy.

15. H.E. Mr. Mondli Gungubele South Africa Minister Ministry of Communications and Digital Technologies.

16. Dr. Jabiri Kuwe Bakari Tanzania Director-General Tanzania Communication Regulatory Authority.

17. Mr. Bernardo Mariano Jr. UN Assistant Secretary-General United Nations Office of Information and Communications Technology (OICT).

18. Dr. Gift Kallisto Machengete Zimbabwe Director-General Postal and Telecommunications Regulatory Authority of Zimbabwe.


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