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Award for dotAfrica's Lucky Masilela

On the eve of the fifth AfICTA Summit taking place in Abuja, Nigeria this week, dotAfrica's Lucky Masilela has been elected as a co-recipient of the African ICT Champion Award 2017 by the African ICT Alliance (AfICTA).
© Matthias Ziegler via 123RF
The Alliance promotes the use of the internet to advance Africa’s development in health service delivery, e-government, e-commerce, job creation and other areas important to Africans’ standard of living.

Masilela’s best known role is as CEO of ZACR (ZA Central Registry) NPC where he was able to defend the rights of the delegation of .africa  geographic Top Level Domain (gTLD) as a new digital identifier for the continent. Delegation earlier this year resulted in the commercial launch of .africa which has to date attracted well over 11 000 successful domain name registrations.

Masilela is also the long-standing former chairman of the South African Communications Forum, a councillor of the B-BBEE ICT Sector Council, a board member of AFRINIC, and former deputy chairperson of the ICT Policy Review Panel (South Africa).

Under his leadership, ZACR has registered more than 1.1 million .za domains and also introduced the city domains of .joburg, .durban and .capetown. He is an African internet pioneer in every sense of the word.

“.africa, in particular, is not just a domain name. It represents the hopes of an entire continent of some 1.2 billion people because of the brighter future it enables. It is more than a communication tool, it is an economic tool which has a true value for countries and the development of local initiatives,” Masilela commented.

AfICTA said in a statement: “For his work in bringing these opportunities to Africa, Lucky Masilela is nominated for the AfICTA Africa Champions Award.” The Africa ICT Champion is a registered trademark award of AfICTA to recognise business leaders in Africa who have distinguished themselves on Africa’s journey to an Information Society.

.africa is the new gTLD for the people and continent of Africa. The mission to create Africa’s very own online identity began as far back as the OR Tambo and Abuja Declarations of the 1990s where it was resolved to use ICT to ensure the development of Africa. By enabling individuals, governments, companies and others to associate their products, services and information with the continent and people of Africa, the .africadomain will similarly enable a new African dawn of growth, peace and prosperity.

The .africa domain enjoys the support of the African Union Commission (AUC) and a comfortable majority of African governments. It furthermore enjoys widespread support from such leading African organisations as AFRINIC, AfTLD, ITU, UNECA and Nepad.  Under the 5th AfICTA summit theme, One Africa, One Future: Leveraging ICT for Sustainable Development, .africa is well on its way to support a united Africa with the leadership Masilela at the helm.