It’s well documented that ready and available access to information plays a vital role in helping people who are impoverished. In order to tackle said access government and businesses need to work together, which brings us to a recent agreement between Cell C and the Free State provincial government.
To that end the pair signed a memorandum of agreement (MOA) in order to provide public access to WiFi for citizens of the province.
While the finer details of the newly inked agreement are unknown, Cell C has stated that the proposed project will provide the province’s citizens with faster and more reliable internet access, especially those from previously disadvantaged communities.
“We firmly believe that there is a positive correlation between the availability of internet access and the social and economic advancement of communities,” added premier of the Free State, Sisi Ntombela.
What shape the proposed infrastructure will take is unknown for now, but Cell C has explained that it will look to set up multiple hotspots, we’re assuming in a similar fashion to Project Isizwe in Pretoria, with them being supported by Facebook’s Express WiFi platform.
“We are pleased to be working with the Province in the first stages of this proposed project. Cell C’s aim is to bring as many South Africans as possible into the digital economy and give them every advantage through the technologies we can provide,” said Cell C CEO Douglas Craigie Stevenson.
He continued that the project will address a wide range of economic drivers such as, smart city development, entrepreneurial upskilling in rural areas, youth empowerment, business networking forums, smart tourism opportunities among others.
The project is also expected to deliver up to 20 000 skills transfer hours with youth across the platform. Hopefully though those who receive said skills will be able to put them to use in the job market, but no official word on that just yet.
Also unknown is when this project will officially begin, with more information likely to follow from Cell C later this year.