President Weah Declares Thursday, World Telecommunications and Information Society Day; To Be Observed as Working Holiday

His Excellency President George Manneh Weah
His Excellency President George Manneh Weah
Photo Credit: Public Affairs

President George Manneh Weah has by Proclamation declared Thursday, May 17, 2018 as “World Telecommunications and Information Society Day” and is to be observed throughout the Republic as a “Working Holiday.”


According to a Foreign Ministry release, World Telecommunications Day has been celebrated annually on May 17 since 1969 to mark the founding of International Communications Union (ITU) and the signing of the first International Telegraph Convention on May 17, 1865.


The ITU, comprised of 192 Member States and over 700 sector members, is the specialized agency of the United Nations (UN) responsible to facilitate development of telecommunications and ICT services globally.


Also, the Day is in consonance with the United Nations General Assembly adopted Resolution (A/RES/60/252) in May 2006 stipulating that World Information Society Day shall be celebrated on May 17 each year.


In November 2006, the ITU Plenipotentiary Conference in Antalya, Turkey decided to celebrate both events on May 17 as World Telecommunications and Information Society Day.


The Proclamation states further that the Government of Liberia being a founding member of the ITU shall support and uphold rules and procedures laid down by the world body; and in its strive to support plans of the ITU and the World Summit on Information Society (WSIS), geared towards building competencies in ICT, especially of women and girls as well as physically challenged individuals through the promotion of equitable access to opportunities provided by ICT, the Government of Liberia, through the Ministry of Posts and Telecommunications, will join Member States of ITU, to celebrate World Telecommunications and Information Society Day on May 17, 2018, under the theme: “Enabling the Positive use of Artificial Intelligence for All.”


President Weah, therefore, calls upon all government ministries and agencies, business houses, national and international ICT organizations concerned, telecommunications companies and internet service providers, to cooperate with the Ministry of Posts and Telecommunications to execute appropriate programs befitting the occasion.


The International Telecommunications Union (ITU) was founded in 1934 replacing the International Telegraph Convention of 1865 for the purpose of helping members states of the Union harmonize their policies, bridge technological differences, foster inter-operability of networks, harness the full potential of information and communication technologies (ICTs) for economic and social advancement.