Celebrated Malawian engineer and scholar, Dr. Matthews Mtumbuka, has been appointed new chief executive officer (CEO) of the Eastern and Southern African Research and Education Network, UbuntuNet Alliance.
Mtumbuka, who has had a long time stint with multinational companies in the fields of oil and telecommunications, among others, becomes the first Malawian to head the venture.
His appointment is effective May 1, according to an announcement by UbuntuNet Alliance chairperson, Professor Stephen Simukanga.
He takes over from Dr. Tusu Tusubira – the founding CEO- who was invited back to caretake the Alliance until the successor to the previous CEO, Dr Pascal Hoba, was identified.
Said Simukanga: “I congratulate Mtumbuka for this appointment and I look forward to working with him.”
An accomplished academic and engineer, Mtumbuka brings to UbuntuNet Alliance over ten years of senior management experience in telecommunications, academia, oil and banking technology industries.
Before accepting his new role at the UbuntuNet Alliance, Mtumbuka has been working for Airtel Africa in a regional role covering IT Operations and Governance and as a Special Assistant to the Chief Information Officer for Airtel Africa, a role in which he has been managing IT systems, infrastructure, billing, Airtel Money and other projects across 14 countries.
Prior to that, he worked as IT Operations and Governance Lead for Airtel Malawi, Zambia, Tanzania, Kenya and Rwanda. He also worked as IT Director for Airtel Rwanda and Airtel Malawi; Head of Technical Services at the Malawi Switch Center (MALSWITCH) Ltd; and IT Service Delivery Coordinator at Shell Exploration and Production – Europe based in Aberdeen, UK. He has taught as an adjunct Lecturer in Management of Technology at the Business School, University of Cape Town, South Africa.
Professionally, Mtumbuka has served as the president of the Malawi Institution of Engineers (MIE) for two years and as Chairperson for the ConnectIT Network, an association of IT Professionals in Shell in Europe. He was Executive Director of the Malawian Initiative for National Development and President of the Oxford University Africa Society.
He currently sits on boards of several companies and organisations in Malawi including NBS Bank, Nico Technologies and Responsible Safari. Previously, he served as Vice Chairperson for the Council for Mzuzu University among other university governance roles.
A registered engineer with the Malawi Board of Engineers and Rhodes Scholar, Mtumbuka received a PhD in Engineering Science at the University of Oxford in England in 2005 after graduating from the University of Malawi with a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering (with Distinction).
His PhD Thesis, titled: “MIMO Techniques for Future High-Speed Wireless Communications Systems’ – investigated techniques that would improve the rate of data transmission on the mobile phone for 4G/LTE technology and produced more than ten publications in refereed journals.
In accepting the post, Mtumbuka, who is also a newspaper columnist at The Nation, stated: “I am excited about this great opportunity to contribute towards the development of technology for education and research institutions in our region.
“We will leverage the great work of my two predecessors to increase our product offering, grow service utilization and expand geographical reach in order to safeguard sustainability of the Alliance.”
Mtumbuka becomes the first Malawian to be appointed CEO of UbuntuNet Alliance which is headquartered in Lilongwe, Malawi.
UbuntuNet Alliance is the regional Research and Education Networking organisation for Eastern and Southern Africa. It plans, builds and operates UbuntuNet, the regional high-speed internet network dedicated to research and education in Eastern and Southern Africa.
The Alliance also promotes and supports the integration of advanced ICT services and tools in research, teaching and learning, taking advantage of the opportunities that come with the Internet.
It was established in the latter half of 2005 by five established and emerging National Research and Education Networks (NRENs), namely MAREN (Malawi), MoRENet, (Mozambique), KENET (Kenya), RwEdNet (Rwanda) and TENET (South Africa).
The membership region of the Alliance spans across Eastern and Southern Africa, covering 26 countries.
Currently, 16 countries have joined the Alliance and are at different stages of development. The Alliance is incorporated as a Trust in Malawi and has its secretariat in Lilongwe, Malawi.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :