The Monitor’s Systems Connectivity

On: June 4, 2009
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About Ali Balunywa
I have 20 years experience in the print media in Africa and Europe. I am in possession of a Bachelors degree in social sciences from Makerere University in Kampala and a post graduate diploma in Journalism and Media management. I am currently following a Masters of Media in New Media studies at the University of Amsterdam.


Gladys Buteraba works at the Monitor as the Helpdesk Administrator. The Monitor is Uganda’s other second daily newspaper ( It is an independent daily founded by a group of journalists. Currently, it is owned by East Africa’s biggest media house, The Nation Group of Companies that publishes the biggest circulating newspaper in East Africa. It also owns radios and televisions in Uganda, Kenya and Tanzania.

Gladys is a computer nerd who studied Business computing and also holds a Cisco Certificate of Network Association (CCNA). Her job is to look out for internal clients with computing problems. She understands the sections of every department, which enables her to provide tailor made solutions.

In the course of her work, she logs on and makes personal checks to find out if the systems are running properly. The systems include; the intranet, email, accounts and editorial. She also handles the day-to-day user codes sections composed of networks, systems and helpdesk.

The networks include the Local Area Networks (LAN) and the Wide Area Networks (WAN) in other words Internet connectivity. The Systems administrator manages all the systems in the organization. These include; the editorial, digital and finance systems. Lastly, the Helpdesk is first line trouble shooting area. It also coordinates all the sections and redistributes work. It further does the check on the physical structures like the satellite Vsats that provide the wireless link to the head office in Nairobi, Kenya and also downloads foreign news from Reuters and other News organizations.

The Helpdesk department receives calls from people in trouble with their systems and someone is assigned to go and look at the problem and solve it where possible on site. Sometimes the system might need reformatting or re installation, which can only be done in the IT room.

Gladys explained with pride how the Monitor is leading in digital innovations. She mentioned the mobile alerts service, which the Monitor outsourced from service providers called: True African. They teamed up with all mobile telephone providers to provide alerts on clients’ mobile phones. The clients pay some money on subscribing to the service. 

The Monitor mobile alerts offer breaking news and news headlines to subscribers. A new client just types in “monitor alert”, enters a number and sends to a specific number provided and he will be subscribed to the service.

Gladys was also happy to note that the Internet through Outlook organized the journalists. It provided an internal email address, keeps contacts and appointments.

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