The Ministry of Information, Communications, and The Digital Economy, with support from the Belgian government, has rolled out internet connectivity to Sub-Counties across the country.
Through phase IV of the County Connectivity Project (CCP), some 753 new sites have been mapped in 46 counties as the government moves to enhance access to the internet at the grassroots.
The contractor, SOULCO Kenya Limited, has embarked on the project, which is among the last-mile initiatives by the ministry to connect the internet across the country.
SOULCO Managing Director (MD) Kris Verspecht said the designs for all 753 new sites have been approved, adding that installation works are expected to start in October.
Verspecht said the project, which is a buildup of phases 1–3, which mainly targeted county headquarters and Sub-County headquarters, aims to scale up connectivity to benefit as many people as possible.
The project, he added, targets key government offices and installations to enhance communication and, at the same time, enable members of the public to access government services online.
Speaking during a stakeholders meeting in Kisumu, Verspecht said the support from the Belgian government may not reach all the offices, especially the county governments, adding that the devolved units were free to come up with budgets to extend the connectivity to their establishments in far-flung areas.
“The county governments are free to come up with small budgets to extend connectivity to some of their establishments near the sites we are building, as long as the connection does not interfere with the security of the network,” he said.
Director of Administration in the ministry, Jeremiah Munayi, said they have onboarded additional services online, adding that the project targets to support Kenyans at the grassroots to access the services at the click of a button.
Munayi said the project targets to support the government’s Bottom-Up Economic Transformation Agenda (BETA), with millions of Kenyans set to have access to the internet and do business.
Kisumu County Commissioner (CC) Hussein Alassow Hussein said the project was instrumental in enhancing communication within government.
The government, he said, has spent billions of shillings to lay the infrastructure, asking all the departments at the national and county levels to utilise the resource prudently.
ICT Authority Acting Nyanza Regional Officer Seif Jowi said the project has recorded tremendous success in the area, cutting down on government communication expenditure.
“Before CCP was rolled out, most of the government departments were using modems, spending millions of shillings on data bundles,” he said.
In Kisumu so far, he said over 1, 000 users have been connected at the New Nyanza regional headquarters building, with more set to be on boarded in the sub-counties as phase IV kicks off.
Some of the offices to be connected include Kondele Police Station, Kisumu City Hall, Ardhi House, Kenya Medical Training College (KMTC), Haki House, and the National Employment Authority (NEA).
By Chris Mahandara