By Rjhay E Laurea
MANILA — Quezon City residents will soon enjoy free wi-fi connectivity as the local government launched its very first Community Wi-Fi in Barangay Payatas.
The project aims to provide broader Internet access to QCitizens, particularly, students who take online classes amid the CoViD-19 Pandemic.
Maharlika TV witnessed the launching program which was attended by Mayor Joy Belmonte: former Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) Undersecretary Eliseo Rio, Jr.: Lester Hurtado, main convenor of Community Wi-Fi Advocates (CWA) Consortium; QC Council of Sectoral Representatives chairman Mr. Brian James Lu; QC-Barangay and Community Relations Department officer-in-charge Mr. Ricky Corpuz; and Barangay Payatas Chairman Manny Guarin.
The QC Freemium Community Wi-Fi program is a joint initiative between the QC local government and CWA by virtue of a memorandum of agreement (MoA) signed by Mayor Belmonte and Hurtado on April 30, 2021.
In accordance with the MoA, the city government will identify sites for the installation of the facility to be provided by CWA.
The consortium will be the one to handle the operations of the project and will be implemented without using government buffers.
It will also provide a livelihood to Quezon City residents because those who want to avail of the extended service can go to their designated piso Wi-Fi retailers.
Each Wi-Fi spot can provide 50MB of free internet access that will be enough for 20-30 minutes of surfing time. Its signal can reach up to two kilometers.
If the one who avails of the free Wi-Fi wants to extend the service, he can go to the nearest WiKonek Piso Wi-Fi retailers within the vicinity.
Mayor Belmonte is optimistic the program will help QCitizens to have more and faster internet access which is badly needed especially now that due to the Covid-19 pandemic, classes are held online and almost all business transactions are already via the internet.
The Philippines has been one of the countries with poor internet connectivity.
Republic Act 10929 mandates the government, including LGUs to provide free internet access to their constituents.
In the past four years, the government thru DICT has already launched 10,000 free Wi-Fi spots. (AI/MTVN)