ICT services for Katoonarib and Swariwau

Information Technology and access to potable water were widely discussed in the villages of Katoonarib and Swariwau on day two of the Ministerial Outreach in Region 9, Upper Takutu-Upper Essequibo.

Minister of Public Telecommunications, Catherine Hughes discussing the ICT services slated to be implemented in Katoonarib and Swariwau with the residents
Minister of Public Telecommunications, Catherine Hughes discussing the ICT services slated to be implemented in Katoonarib and Swariwau with the residents

Minister Catherine Hughes and Managing Director of GWI, Dr. Richard Van West-Charles and team met with residents from the two communities on Saturday, February 16.

Minister Hughes said that her Ministry is aware of the communication challenges that exist between the Hinterland and the Coast, explaining that very soon infrastructure will be in place for ICT access and services within their communities. These improvements, she said, would allow for access to all the information on the world wide web, and especially to Government/public services.

The minister highlighted that since the formation of the Public Telecommunications Ministry, villages such as Aishalton, Sand Creek, St. Ignatius, Annai, Karasabai, Kato, Paramakatoi, Mabaruma, Kwakwani and many others, are now connected to the Internet through satellite technology.

Throughout the country, more than 300 schools now have Wi-Fi connections, and both students and teachers can now participate in virtual classrooms, i.e. participating live in classes at the top secondary and primary schools in the city and environs.

She assured the villagers that as far as the political situation is concerned, the country awaits the Appeal Court’s decision but the APNU+AFC Government remains in place in the meantime, and will continue to implement the plans for national advancement as stipulated in Budget 2019.

Meanwhile, Dr. Van West-Charles told the residents that GWI works with the economic and social well being of citizens at heart. He pointed out that health centres cannot function without a continuous supply of water, neither can schools, Hot Meal hubs, cassava factories, farms and most other businesses. He sought to reassure the residents that their water infrastructure which has been in existence for many years will be closely examined and rehabilitated where necessary to ensure that potable is always available.

The meetings were part of a Ministerial Outreach in Region 9 from Friday 15 to Sunday 17 February.

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Hinterland Outreach 2019

Images: Karime Peters