IN THE wake of two consecutive natural disasters that virtually turned some parts of Central Philippines upside down, the National ICT Confederation of the Philippines (NICP) has scrapped the 2013 edition of its annual SummIT this month.
Wit Holganza, NICP president, officially announced the cancellation of the 6th SummIT yesterday after the NICP board has decided to call the event off following the onslaught of supertyphoon Yolanda that devastated the lives of thousands including several ICT Council members in the Visayas.
“Faced with this situation, the NICP board has decided to cancel the 6th NICP SummIT,” Holganza said. “Moreover, we are expecting two or three more typhoons before the year ends.”
The 6th SummIT was originally scheduled to be hosted by Tagbilaran City on Nov. 28-29, but had to be transferred to Cebu City following the magnitude-7 earthquake that shook Bohol on Oct. 15.
“We have exhausted various ways of pushing through with the SummIT in the aftermath of the earthquake, and it was with welcome gratitude that the Cebu ICT Council has stepped forward to accept the challenge of hosting the event,” Holganza said,
Less than a month after the quake, however, Yolanda – considered as the “Storm of the Century” – happened and alternate host Cebu suddenly became the center of relief and rehabilitation efforts.
“Our hosts – members of the ICT Council in Cebu – now have their hands full assisting in what is turning to be a massive international relief and rehabilitation operation, and as we don’t want to get in the way of this most essential endeavor, we have to cancel the conference,” Holganza said.
The cancellation, according to Holganza, will also give them more time to prepare for the 2014 SummIT in Davao.
This early, the ICT Davao Council and its members are gearing up to make the 2014 NICP SummIT an international event.
eGov awards to highlight IT confab
FOLLOWING the large-scale devastation wrought by the magnitude-7 earthquake in Bohol, the 6th annual SummIT of the National ICT Confederation of the Philippines (NICP) originally set in Tagbilaran City next month will be staged in Cebu City on Nov. 28-29 at the Cebu Parklane International Hotel.
This was announced by SummIT organizers, who decided to transfer the venue of the annual event to give Bohol enough time and space for its recovery and reconstruction efforts.
“We’re very sorry the event would not push through in Bohol as scheduled,” NICP president Wit Holganza said. “Tagbilaran would have been a great host for the SummIT, but we had to change the venue as we don’t want to be an added weight on the shoulders of the Bohol Provincial and Tagbilaran City governments.”
Holganza added that the change of venue would allow the LGUs to concentrate mainly on their recovery and rebuilding efforts.
With the change of venue of the 6th NICP SummIT, the Cebu Educational Development Foundation for Information Technology (CEDFIT), as the ICT Council of Cebu, has accepted the challenge of being the new host.
Wilfredo “Jun” Sa-a, managing director of CEDFIT, accepted the responsibility right after coming back from a relief trip to Loon, Bohol, and seeing the devastation in one of the worst hit towns.
“Cebu was very lucky to have been spared from the widespread damage,” Sa-a said. “We should help Bohol in any way we can.”
This year’s NICP conference is co-organized by the Department of Science and Technology – Information and Communications Technology Office (DOST-ICTO) and bears the theme: “Innovation in Governance, Education and Tourism for ITpreneurs (i.GET.IT).”
The annual conference, which brings together champions of ICT from the private and public sectors, seeks to share industry trends, understand challenges, constraints and opportunities for ICT development in cities which aim to harness the potential of the industry and promote trade and competitiveness through innovation.
The ICT has become a vital force in transforming nations and the world has increasingly recognized ICT as an essential utility in advancing economic development and reducing poverty.
As a key driver to the growth of the Philippine regions, the development of ICT infrastructure and the promotion of the innovation and entrepreneurship have attracted a significant amount of investment, generated fiscal revenues, and employment opportunities for Philippine cities.
A meeting among leaders of NICP and its ICT Councils will also be held during the 6th SummIT. The leaders’ conference slated for Nov. 29 at the Qualfon Bldg. of Skyrise 3 is an annual general membership assembly of NICP and its ICT Councils from Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao.
This year’s NICP Leaders Conference is aimed at addressing the gaps that would enable them to meet the challenge of creating 200,000 jobs in the countryside by 2016.
Highlighting the two-day 6th NICP SummIT is the eGov Awards, wherein the winning and pioneering ICT initiatives by LGUs in the G2C and G2B categories are recognized and rewarded.
“The G2C category is for outstanding practices in applying ICT solutions in the education and engagement of the public in the use of electronic facilities or channels towards providing improved, timely and relevant delivery of public services,” eGov Awards committee chair Jocelle Batapa- Sigue of Bacolod City said. “The G2B category, on the other hand, is for laudable practices in integrating ICT solutions and the commitment of its administration in the bureau’s responsiveness to the needs of business enterprises, thereby creating business opportunities.”
ICT buffs and enthusiasts are invited to attend the 6th NICP SummIT and have the opportunity to network with ICT leaders and innovators from Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao.
Interested parties may contact CEDFIT at tel. nos. (032) 412-7695 to 96 or the NICP Secretariat at [email protected] for more information and inquiries.