DIGITISATION

Government to deliver internet to 8,000 schools by end of 2022

Plans are also underway to digitise rural areas and connect over 10 million homes and 24,000 businesses upcountry to the internet.

In Summary
  • The ministry plans to digitize five billion government manual records.
  • It plans laying an additional 100,000 kilometre of fiber optic cable countrywide and setting up more microwave and satellite points.
Pupils of Nyamecheo Primary School in Kenyenya subcounty during the launch of the Digital Literacy Programme.
FLAGSHP PROJECT FLAGS: Pupils of Nyamecheo Primary School in Kenyenya subcounty during the launch of the Digital Literacy Programme.
Image: BENSON NYAGESIBA

The Kenya government is stepping up its drive to ensure more Kenyans are connected to the internet as part of a broader policy to deliver better public services.

In order to do so, the ICT Authority and the state Department for Training and Skills Development are working with the private sector and other agencies to ensure last-mile internet connectivity from the government’s fibre optic infrastructure that runs across the country.

Speaking during the addition of Bosto Primary School in Bomet to its National Schoolnet Programme, Alfred Cheruiyot, Principal Secretary in the State Department for Training and Skills Development said 8,000 schools will be connected to the internet by end of this year.

“For us to achieve this ambitious target, we are working with ICT Authority and Huawei to deploy appropriate technologies for schools depending on their locations and technology presence,'' Cheruiyot said. 

This includes laying an additional 100,000 kilometre of fiber optic cable countrywide and setting up more microwave and satellite points.

He added that last mile internet connectivity to schools within a radius of 10 kilometers of the national fibre optic cable will be delivered using additional masts while those within 1 kilometer will be connected directly through a new cable to the institution.

According to the ministry, the government will then be able to connect all the 18,000 government offices, 13,000 health facilities, 400 police stations, and 54 Huduma Centres to high-speed internet capacity.

Additionally, over five billion government manual records will be digitized and all critical government systems automated and integrated to enhance service delivery.

He urged the community to embrace technology as a new way to tap into their talents and investments so as to spur economic growth. He noted that in order to ensure the stability of the internet services, the ICT Authority had the support of the security agencies to protect the infrastructure and asked the members of the public to report any cases of vandalism.

Echoing his remarks, Acting CEO ICT Authority Kipronoh Ronoh said that Bosto Primary School illustrated the model that the government is pursuing in partnership with Huawei to set up wireless microwave radio link masts in or close to the school compounds then connect these to the National Optical Fiber Backbone Infrastructure (NOFBI).

“Broadly, in order to bridge the digital divide, the government aims to train 20 million citizens in the country on digital skills and roll out broadband connectivity to the rural areas under the rural digitisation programme,'' Ronoh said.

Plans are also underway to digitize rural areas and connect over 10 million homes and 24,000 businesses upcountry to the internet.