Jones Town in South St Andrew is the latest community to benefit from access to free reliable Internet service as the Government continues to roll out its Wi-Fi hotspot programme across the island.
The $7.5-million facility, situated at the Jones Town Primary School, was officially commissioned on Friday by Chief Executive Officer of the Universal Service Fund (USF), Daniel Dawes.
It forms part of the Government’s efforts to provide Internet connectivity so that citizens can do business, work, learn, earn, among other things.
Dawes, in his remarks at the commissioning ceremony, said that the agency is on track to establish 189 community hotspots islandwide before the end of the financial year.
“We are way beyond 100,” he noted.
He said the Fund will continue to provide public Wi-Fi in critical town centres and 10 community access points (CAPs). “We have already launched a number of them throughout the length and breadth of Jamaica,” he shared.
Dawes said that Jones Town Primary School has been furnished with computers, “so anybody can leave from the community and go to this space, do your assignments, do your business transactions”.
He informed that additional hotspots will be established in South St Andrew in the community of Trench Town and at the Charlie Smith High School in Arnett Gardens before the end of the month.
Meanwhile, Dawes said that the Fund is in discussion with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) to assist in the resuscitation of several CAP sites.
“We are also in discussion with HEART/NSTA Trust to ensure that these facilities are used for the training of young people in the immediate communities and beyond,” he said.
Leader of the Opposition and Member of Parliament for South St Andrew, Mark Golding, urged the residents to make use of the service being provided to empower themselves.
“Don’t use it for nastiness and to spread badness and negative things,” he said.
He noted the importance of making investments in improving the lives of people.
“It is investments in the people that generate the kind of society we need… and if we invest in the people, the returns will be great. People’s lives will improve, and life will be better,” Golding pointed out.
Chairman of Jones Town Primary School, Patrick Rose, welcomed the establishment of the facility, noting that providing the community with free Internet service “is a step in the right direction”.
– JIS News