The Communications Authority of Kenya [CA] has emphasized that granting children access to the internet carries potential risks unless they are equipped with the necessary knowledge to safeguard themselves. Speaking at the ongoing Kenya Film Festival in Nyeri, CA’s Director General, Ezra Chiloba, highlighted the significance of child online safety. While acknowledging the internet’s role as a gateway to boundless opportunities, Chiloba underscored the importance of ensuring that children can fully exploit its advantages.
Chiloba pointed out that children and youth are crucial stakeholders, often being early adopters of ICT products and services. He emphasized that fostering a productive and secure internet experience for them necessitates ongoing collaboration among various stakeholders. CA has consistently sponsored the “Child Online Protection and Safety” theme for the fifth consecutive year, focusing on promoting safe internet usage, encouraging appropriate online conduct, discouraging harmful online behaviors, and safeguarding online identities and reputations.
Chiloba indicated that CA’s partnership with the Ministry of Education stems from the recognition that using music and narratives as educational tools can effectively raise awareness about emerging issues, particularly Child Online Protection, among young audiences. The Kenya National Music Festival serves as a platform for CA to increase awareness about this critical topic while motivating children and youth to showcase their talents through music and dance.
The festival has become a powerful means of instilling positive values in children and youth. Chiloba noted that CA aims to leverage this platform to educate children on responsible internet use and online self-protection. The Director General affirmed that CA is equipping students, teachers, and parents with the knowledge, skills, and resources required to navigate the online space safely. He emphasized the significance of music as a potent mode of communication, capable of conveying messages that words alone cannot express.
CA extends an invitation to children, youth, parents, teachers, and the public to actively engage with the Authority during the festival. This engagement will facilitate learning about online safety and the progress of the ICT sector in Kenya. The festival, themed ‘Nurturing Talent for Innovation and National Development,’ is being held at Dedan Kimathi University of Science and Technology.