By Nigel M. Nassar
KAMPALA - At least 15 tech-savvy journalists have been deployed to man social media during the much-anticipated fourth edition of Vision Group’s Pakasa Forum this Saturday.
The forum is scheduled to take place at Kampala Parents School in Naguru from 9:00am to 2:00pm.
It will run under the theme Creating Opportunities for Youth in East Africa, and will host Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta as the keynote speaker.
New Vision social media editor Samuel Ouga says that through collaboration with Kenyatta’s press team, Vision Group has secured an opportunity for people to ask the Kenyan President any question via the hashtag #askuhuru.
In fact, as you read this, Kenyatta, the youngest President in East Africa and one of the most followed on Twitter (@UKenyatta) and Facebook, is already taking the questions via the said hashtag, some of which will be responded to Friday on Urban TV’s show, #tag.
“While discussions at the forum are underway, the 15 tech-savvy journalists will be on hand with their gadgets, engaging Vision Group’s huge social media family on all the platforms where we have active presence,” says New Vision deputy online editor Arthur Oyako, who is heading the social media team on this assignment.
The team, which is already in overdrive pushing discussions about the forum via Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, will be divided into two.
Kenyan president Uhuru Kenyatta will be the keynote speaker at the upcoming Pakasa Forum in Kampala. (AFP)
One team will be on the scene capturing and uploading blow-by-blow accounts of the forum, while the other will be at Vision Group headquarters coordinating and concretizing the on-scene posts to move the story forward.
On his part, Ouga says they have just put final touches on recruiting a number of youngsters to form a mini academy of Twitter, Facebook and Instagram enthusiasts, who will discuss live and put in perspective whatever is happening at Kampala Parents.
“The team of youngters is ready, and each member is an expert of some sort on their social media platform of choice. And since MTN will be giving us free high-speed internet to help with these online discussions, we just cannot go wrong,” he says.
Also, the goings-on of the forum will be live-streamed using the Urban TV channel on Youtube so that audiences in the Diaspora can follow.
Complementing the live-streaming for audiences in the diaspora will be the dedicated site http://www.pakasa.co.ug/
The New Vision website has a media resource centre, a photo gallery that will be updated in real time, and newsfeeds and plug-ins for a number of micro blog-in sites.
Fans of the Urban TV programme called #tag will also be catered for. According to Daniel Mumbere, the host of #tag, a show which highlights social media trends and conversations, this Friday’s show at 7:30pm will be a build-up to the Pakasa Forum.
“We shall be engaging the audience with a social reporting kind of discussion that will delve into the different online strategies that will be employed at the Pakasa Forum the following day. A number of guests have already been lined up to discuss the forum, we just can’t wait,” says Mumbere with much anticipation.
A corporate social responsibility initiative of Vision Group, the Pakasa Forum seeks to bridge the information gap on where resources, opportunities and support for the youth in Uganda can be accessed.
The forum, now running for the fourth time, is inspired by Pakasa, a pullout that covers entrepreneurship issues in the New Vision every Friday. The pullout tells stories of successful entrepreneurs and the hurdles they overcame to get there, and gives expert advice on aspects of starting up and operating business in Uganda.
To take part in this edition of the forum, email your details to email@example.com by Thursday August 21, 2014.
Vision Group head of marketing, Susan Nsibirwa, says only up to 3000 participants will be accommodated due to limited space, and also for security reasons.
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