More communities to come online – Min. Hughes

DPI, Guyana, Thursday, September 12, 2019

More communities in Region 2, Pomeroon-Supenaam are expected to come online before September month-end. This was disclosed, by Minister of Public Telecommunications, Hon. Catherine Hughes, during a recent interview on the National Communications Network’s (NCN), radio programme ‘Insight’.

According to the Telecommunications Minister, Matthews Ridge, Port Kaituma, Mabaruma, Akawini, Saint Monica, Jacklow, Sirikie, Kabakaburi, St, Cuthbert Mission, Moraikobe, Kimbia, Sand Hill are already among recent recipients of internet access via the Ministry’s E-Access and ICT Services for Hinterland, Poor, and Remote communities Project.

The move to bring other communities online, reinforces His Excellency, President David Granger’s commitment to closing the “digital divide” between the coast and the hinterland.

“There are no longer gaps that say because you are located in a certain part of our geographical landscape that you will be locked out… That traditionally is what we referred to as the digital divide; where the people on the coast have access to the internet among other opportunities while the hinterland does not,” the minister explained.

This step, the Public Telecommunications Minister noted, also forms part of the government’s objective to ensure all the necessary tools are available to create opportunities for the country’s future leaders.

Previously, far-flung communities would have to establish relationships with private sector companies to gain access to the internet.

“This was challenging because it often meant a village needed to find $15,000 to $30,000 every month,” Minister Huges stated.

The administration is working to ensure that these areas have access to free internet access she emphasised.

Minister Hughes also spoke of her ministry’s plan to continue to provide internet access to more schools, government agencies, ministries, along with the creation of additional hotspots. Thus far, the ministry has been able to offer such services to over 170 schools and established over 174 ICT hubs.