The Kenya Bureau of Standards (KEBS) has partnered with inABLE to develop the first-ever local standard to ensure ICT products and services meet the needs of persons with disabilities (PWDs). InABLE is a nonprofit organization that works extensively to empower PWDs through the provision of assistive technologies.
The standards are aimed at ensuring that public and private sector digital products and services are accessible to Persons with Disabilities and to the elderly who are largely disconnected from most e-government services and business-owned digital platforms.
This development is in response to the National Information, Communications and Technology (ICT) Policy of Kenya of 2020, and sets specific requirements that ICT products and services must conform with. They cut across web-based, non-web, and hybrid technologies.
Speaking during the unveiling of the standards, KEBS Managing Director, Lt Col (Rtd.) Bernard Njiraini, said, “To accommodate all people in the society, inclusive design and universal design principles should be integrated into digital products and services.”
Cabinet Secretary, Ministry of Public Prof. Margret Kobia dubbed this an important milestone as Kenya becomes the first African country to develop such guidelines.
“I am pleased to note that today we witness yet another milestone in our Country’s quest for disability inclusion. This is the launch of the Kenya Standard (KS ISO 2952) on Accessibility for ICT Products and Services for persons with disabilities. This launch makes Kenya the first country in Africa to develop a digital accessibility standard for persons with disabilities.” She said.
The standards are labelled Kenya Standards (KS 2952-1:2022 Kenya Standard — Accessibility-ICT products and services — Part 1-Requirements, First Edition and KS 2952-2:2022 Kenya Standard — Accessibility-ICT products and services — Part 2 –Conformance, First Edition) in Africa.