The number of Fijians with Internet access will rise by more than 60-thousand by the end of this year as more of the Bainimarama Government’s Telecentres come on line.
The Prime Minister says the number includes 5000 additional school children who will benefit from regular access to the Net at more than 20 community Telecentres all over Fiji.
Commodore Bainimarama was speaking at the opening of two more Telecentres today in the Central Division – at Baulevu and Tailevu. Both centres have been established in local schools (Baulevu HighSchool and Tailevu North College) and will provide a range of telecommunications services for hundreds of residents of the surrounding areas. They will be used by schoolchildren during school hours and by the rest of the community after hours and on weekends.
The Prime Minister says the Telecentres are part of the Government’s telecommunications revolution that has already provided Fijians with mobile phones and cheaper calls through increased competition. “Many of you – the ordinary Fijians who are the backbone of our nation – have never had Internet access before. We have bridged that divide – the digital divide – and have given everyone using these Centres the opportunity to gain knowledge and access the same services”, he said.
The Prime Minister urged schoolchildren in isolated areas to use the Internet to broaden their horizons. “You can immediately be part of a bigger world, a world of knowledge and of contact with people in other places. You may come from a small place but it is One World and you are now fully part of it”, he said.
The Prime Minister also urged parents to take full advantage of the Telecentres, which give Fijians with family members overseas the opportunity to speak to them via web chat services such as Skype.
As well as Internet access, the Centres provide a range of computer-related services, including the ability to type and copy documents and scan documents for transmission via email.
The Prime Minister described the Telecentres as a game changer that gave ordinary Fijians access to all aspects of the telecommunications revolution that was transforming people’s lives the world over.“We want to empower ordinary Fijians, to give them the basic things they need to improve their lives and the lives of their families. This includes better roads, better access to electricity and water and better access to telecommunications”, he said.
Commodore Bainimarama says his Government has promised the nation better services and is fulfilling that promise. “We are delivering a world of difference for ordinary Fijians. We don’t just talk about providing services. We deliver”, the Prime Minister added.