ISLAMABAD-Pakistan Youth Change Advocates (PYCA) organised a seminar to highlight the technology work of government and citizens to digitalise the governance system, Friday.

The seminar “Youth Volunteerism & ICT4Governance” was attended by notable dignitaries and technology experts who appreciated the efforts of PYCA.

The primary objective of the seminar was to highlight the work that both the government and the citizens of Pakistan have carried out to digitalize the process of governance to achieve greater transparency, accountability and improved service delivery in the country.

Special Assistant to Chief Minister Khyber Pakhtunkhwa on Science & Technology and IT Kamran Khan Bangash, was the chief guest while Managing Director of KPIT Board Dr. Shahbaz Khan, was the Guest of Honor.

The event began with a documentary that gave an insight into the initiative undertaken by PYCA to create awareness about the role that average Pakistanis can play to achieve greater transparency, accountability and better service delivery through the use of digital tools.

Statement issued said that PYCA trained 100 university youth in 5 universities of Islamabad and Peshawar and invited the young participants to share ideas for any digital solutions that they might have to improve the governance process.

Five best solutions proposed by the students were picked up for up-scaling by PYCA.

Sana Ali Shah of City University Peshawar while introducing her e-solution explained that FLIP is a digital navigator and guidance system that can be used to improve the efficiency of employees in an organization and of rescue teams during emergency situations.

It can also be used to help people find their way in huge indoor compounds.

A group of students from Iqra University Islamabad Campus presented their mobile app by the name of, SpeakUp.

An incident of sexual harassment that our friend experienced a few months ago became our primary motivation to develop SpeakUp, explained Hammail Salman.

 He said through this app users can anonymously report incidents of sexual harassment that they or someone they know has experienced.

This would enable relevant government departments to map geographical hotspots to take corrective measures, explained Mohi-ud-Din Shah while elaborating SpeakUp’s features.

The third e-solution was presented by Ishaq Ali Shah of City University Peshawar who has developed a web-portal in an effort to counter corruption by filing complaints against corrupt officials.

The second half of the seminar was dedicated to the launch of the book, “Citizens’ Volunteerism and Digital Governance in Pakistan” authored Omer Ahmed Awan.

Omer Awan shared that the book was a first of its kind endeavor in Pakistan to document all the ICT-based local initiatives taken by both the citizens and the government to ensure enhanced citizens’ participation, efficient public service as well as greater transparency & accountability.

Dr. Shahbaz Khan shared the various initiatives that the KP government has taken in order to integrate ICT tools in the process of governance.

He also shared that the KP-IT Board would look into how the e-solutions developed by the youth can be integrated with the government’s on-going efforts to digitalize governance.

Kamran Khan Bangash, appreciated the efforts of PYCA in promoting ICT tools to not only improve e-governance but as a result of it, strengthen the democratic values.

He emphasized, “In the age of internet, it has become easier and by the virtue of it important for the governments to deliver. We must keep up and use this gift of technology for the development of Pakistan. The process of digitizing governance in Pakistan cannot be imagined without a profound role being played by the youth.”