Residents in two rural areas in the Eastern Cape will as of today get access to free WiFi on the Project Isizwe network, after the service launched in the province today.

Project Isizwe currently operates a network of free hotpots in the Tshwane area.

The service was launched in partnership with global satellite operator SES at the Ingwe TVET College’s Lusikisiki and Mount Frere campuses, where over 4 000 students will have access to the internet on their mobiles,laptops and desktops.

The project is also targeting mostly other youths in the areas.

“As we are celebrating Youth Month during June, it is important to remember how important it is for the youth in South Africa and especially those in rural areas, to connect with the world for training and learning purposes,” said Zahir Khan, COO of Project Isizwe.

“By opening the doors to the world through giving them free access to the internet, we are giving them opportunities to become employable and contribute to the economic development of the province. We believe until we could solve the connectivity problem there, connectivity would always be a problem,” he added.

“Satellite is the key element to enabling this service to the unconnected because of its extensive coverage. Also, building fibre or wireless backhaul infrastructure to connect under served areas like Lusikisiki is very capital intensive, which is why the satellite link is so competitive. SES has the global infrastructure in place to rapidly deploy these kinds of services and this is the reason SES could assist Project Isizwe so quickly to achieve their goals,” said Ibrahima Guimba-Saidou, senior vice president of SES Commercial in Africa.

Watch this video clip of the launch Project Isizwe’s ConnectUp WiFi TV.