Majority of MPs ‘computer illiterate’

2010-05-12 11:31

A total of 85% of current MPs are not computer literate.

If they did not adapt quickly and learn how to use their cellphones for more than calls and SMSes, or didn’t know how to search for programmes on DStv, they would soon be called BBTs – Born Before Technology.

This was the opinion of Obed Bapela, senior ANC MP and chairperson of committees and oversight in the National Assembly yesterday.

Bapela said from next year all MPs would have to have a Facebook profile and be registered for their constituency on Twitter or other social networks, as voters were becoming younger all the time.

Training courses in computer literacy would be offered. The training would be offered in three groups.

Internet access

Parliament wanted to ensure in this way that all members were familiar with computers by the end of the year.

“We are moving in the direction where all MPs will have modern cellphones and be able to receive their email on them.

“They also have laptops and computers, but not necessarily internet access. We have to invest money in ensuring that they do have access.”

Parliaments worldwide were currently investing in technology to improve their jobs.

Committee rooms in Parliament were currently being renovated to ensure they were all equipped with modern technology.

“Technology is not only on your laptop or cellphone – soon television will migrate from analogue to digital, and programmes which reflect your municipal account, email and government information will be added.”

– Die Burger


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