The Blockchain Association of Uganda is organizing Africa Blockchain Conference slated to take place on May 23 and 24, 2018. According to Kwame Rugunda, the current head of the association, the conference is poised to be “the biggest” of its kind in Africa, to date.
Themed “the role of blockchain technology in Africa’s transformation”, it is aimed at being one of the first steps towards “positioning Uganda as the leader in the blockchain conversation across Africa,” said Kwame.
The conference’s website has an ambitious list which includes H.E Yoweri Museveni as the expected guest of honor.
Additionally, the Governor Bank of Uganda, Prof. Tumusiime-Mutebile, the chairman of the recently formed Kenyan Blockchain Taskforce, Dr. Bitange Ndemo, CEO of BitPesa, Elizabeth Rossiello, CEO of Stanbic Bank Uganda, Patrick Mweheire, CEO of Binance, Changpeng Zhao and the executive director of the Bitcoin Foundation, Llew Claasen, are among the key speakers.
Asked if all the listed speakers and panelists and speakers will be in attendance, Kwame maintained that “everyone on the list has confirmed his or her attendance.”
The two-day event will take place at Kampala Serena Hotel with 15 speakers, 30 panelists, 6 break-out sessions, and 700 participants are expected as well as a hackathon. It is organized with support from the Government of Uganda.
According to Blockchain optimists, the technology is the next big thing after the birth of the internet. Christine Lagarde, the IMF chief, has been quoted on several occasions in support of cryptocurrencies, one of the many products of blockchain technology.
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“It may not be wise to dismiss virtual currencies,” Fortune Magazine quoted her. Adding that, “Instead, citizens may one day prefer virtual currencies.”
In Uganda, Laboremus, a software company has positioned itself as one of the few that are embracing the technology, with Timothy Musoke, its CTO, regularly writing about the topic.
Elsewhere in Africa, Kenya's BitPesa and Zimbabwe's Golix have leveraged the technology to branch out in cryptocurrency. While Bitland in Ghana “aims to provide services to allow individuals and organizations to survey land and record deeds onto the Bitshares Blockchain.”
Apart from this conference, Blockchain Africa conference has taken place before in South Africa. Although organized in Johannesburg, the event had only one person of color. Something many criticized it for.