The Cabinet Secretary for ICT, Innovation and Youth Joe Mucheru has ordered for a review of internet accessibility devices to enable Kenyans do e-business using the expanded internet accessibility.
Speaking at Radad in Baringo County, Mucheru directed the Communication Authority Director-General Mercy Wanjau to look for ways of lowering internet access devices so that Kenyans can utilize the internet from the newly launched google balloon technology.
He also called on Telkom Kenya to roll out their 4G network across the country to ease accessibility and deploy the full utilization of the new technology.
“The technology was started about ten years ago as google x and was used mainly for emergencies such as floods and hurricanes, but we will be the first country to commercialise its use,” said the CS.
He said the technology is transformative and will change the way Kenya will develop and grow.
“Like Baringo whose main economic activities are livestock and bee keeping, the 4G network accessibility will enable the farmers to sell their products online,” added Mucheru.
The CS pointed out that his ministry will use the universal services to ensure there is internet connectivity and that the only challenge was how to ensure affordability and availability of access devices.
While assuring that the balloons will be safe as it is solar-powered and high in the sky, the CS said the technology will enable remote accessibility across the country.
“As you have seen the president was here with us, though not physically but through the internet and you talked to him and he advised our youth,” explained the CS.
On her part, Wanjau said internet accessibility will also be used in learning in the schools.
“As Communication Authority we will ensure that we expand the network coverage in the country as this will also enhance inclusivity in our country,” said the DG.
Baringo Governor Stanley Kiptis said that without innovation the development will be hampered and called on the youth to venture into technology and farming as the new wealth creation model.
Aerial images will be used to improve agriculture by monitoring weather and advising farmers accordingly.
“We are supporting the Ajira program by the government and as county government, we have pumped money to support youth and innovation at our innovation and resource hubs in the county,” said the governor.
Telkom Kenya CEO Mugo Kibati announced that internet access through google loon balloons has commenced this month after the project partners approved the compatibility of network and integration tests period.
In attendance during the launch of the services were the Company’s Chairman, Eddy Njoroge, Chief Technology and information officer John Barorot, County Commissioner Henry Wafula and Tiaty Member of Parliament William Kamket who said they have already accessed the services.
The CS also toured the Rift Valley Innovation Centre, Mwachon in Eldama Ravine where the government through his ministry trains the youth on Ajira program, where youth earn a living through online work.