Project Isizwe slated to launch in all nine provinces
Incoming Project Isizwe CEO Zahir Khan has outlined new plans to introduce free and accessible WiFi to all nine provinces within the next 12 months.
The new CEO, who is set to take over from incumbent CEO Alan Knott-Craig Jnr, in an official statement said: “When I say presence, it could be anything from one site to 100, but we will at least have operations in every single province in the next year.”
Project Isizwe has seen success in the City of Tshwane, which is currently preparing to have public WiFi within walking distance of every citizen by 2017.
Khan further elaborated on plans to launch Project Isizwe in Port Elizabeth’s Nelson Mandela Bay Metro, stating that “There are definitely plans in the pipeline. Of course, I can’t say they are going to use Isizwe but I can say Nelson Mandela Bay Metro will have free WiFi by December. That I’m pretty sure of.”
Citing Project Isizwe’s aim to reach every municipality in the country, Khan elaborated that issues surrounding funding plague launches in local areas: “The big metros that are generating significant amounts of revenue through their own activities, they have got cash to fund these types of projects, but as soon as you get into the smaller metros ““ like Nelson Mandela Bay, Buffalo City and Mangaung ““ they don’t have those volumes of cash available. They are still facing the dire challenges of simple provision of what was historically classified as basic services like water, sanitation and road infrastructure. They are all very keen and interested in moving ahead with WiFi. The challenge becomes how do they unlock funding to do this.”
Khan concluded by elaborating that Government has already taken significant steps to enable free broadband connectivity to South African citizens. “We have seen national government is classifying free WiFi as a basic utility, and is instructing all the way down to local government that everyone has to start formulating their own plans about how they are going to bring free WiFi to their communities.”
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Source: IT Web