His bold, charismatic vision and energy for realising his UbuntuNet dream will not be forgotten. Carved in the history of UbuntuNet Alliance is Eng. Dr Tusubira’s bold dream for realising an African data communications network, the UbuntuNet.
In Lilongwe on March 26th, UbuntuNet Alliance recognised Tusu for his timeless contribution to bridging Africa’s digital divide through his work in UbuntuNet Alliance. Prof John SSebuwufu, the Alliance Chairperson, thanked Dr Tusubira for his excellent work and skillfulness and intellectual capacity in making the data network, the UbuntuNet an African success story.
Dr Tusubira called for strengthening of NRENs in Sub-Saharan Africa and ensuring that the Alliance remains functioning as one.
“UbuntuNet Alliance is not just an organisation – it is a family, a community of practice for research and education networking. Through this, and at no cost, an experience sharing and practical support network has evolved: Having family does not make economic sense, and yet without family, we experience a great gap, something missing in our lives. We need to ensure that the Alliance remains as a functional family,” said Dr Tusubira.
Dr Tusubira added that harnessing the spirit of Ubuntu and working together would ensure that the benefit of reduced connectivity prices trickle down to all NRENs.
“It is also important to remember that our pricing has a steep downward trend as volume goes up, until we get to about $20 per Mbps per month, because we have long term leases, and the Alliance is not after profit. The Alliance has already planned a 20% reduction in unit costs this year, and that trend will continue as volume increase.”
Lastly, Dr Tusu drew lessons from successful African Airlines in calling for strengthened national research and education networks first and also keeping the regional network, the Alliance strong through increased collaboration.
Other recognitions went to Cathrin Stover of GEANT Ltd for her extensive contributions to the AfricaConnect Project and Margaret Ngwira, one of the founding Directors of the Alliance and one who nurtured the Secretariat from its first day. Her immeasurable contributions to the Alliance since 2005 are well documented here.