Govt tar­gets 80 per­cent broad­band ac­cess by 2020

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - Business -

AT least 80 per­cent of Zim­bab­weans should have ac­cess to broad­band in­ter­net by the year 2020, a cab­i­net Min­is­ter has said.

In­ter­net ac­cess is the process that en­ables in­di­vid­u­als and or­gan­i­sa­tions to con­nect to the In­ter­net us­ing com­puter ter­mi­nals, com­put­ers, mo­bile de­vices, some­times via com­puter net­works. Once con­nected to the In­ter­net, users can ac­cess In­ter­net ser­vices, such as email and the World Wide Web.

In­ter­net ser­vice providers (ISPs) of­fer In­ter­net ac­cess through var­i­ous tech­nolo­gies that of­fer a wide range of data sig­nal­ing rates (speeds). Con­sumer use of the In­ter­net first be­came pop­u­lar through dial-up In­ter­net ac­cess in the 1990s. By the first decade of the 21st cen­tury, many con­sumers in de­vel­oped na­tions used faster, broad­band In­ter­net ac­cess tech­nolo­gies.

Of the more than 300 mil­lion in­ter­net users in Africa, Zim­babwe is con­tribut­ing 2 per­cent while Nige­ria with a pop­u­la­tion of more than 100 mil­lion has the high­est of 28 per­cent.

Speak­ing at the launch of the web­site for the Zim­babwe Di­a­betes Association (ZDA) in the cap­i­tal, In­for­ma­tion Com­mu­ni­ca­tion and Tech­nol­ogy and Courier Ser­vices Min­is­ter Supa Mandi­wanzira said mo­bile pen­e­tra­tion in Zim­babwe stood at 105 per­cent.

“We have not done bad as a coun­try in terms of mo­bile pen­e­tra­tion. The ma­jor­ity of Zim­bab­weans now have ac­cess to the in­ter­net through their mo­bile phones,” he said.

“We are sit­ting at more than 105 per­cent mo­bile pen­e­tra­tion which means we have more phones than we have peo­ple in our coun­try,” he said.

“Ac­tive pen­e­tra­tion, sim cards or phones that are ac­tu­ally be­ing used on a daily ba­sis are sit­ting at 95 per­cent. That means the ma­jor­ity of Zim­bab­weans have ac­cess to mo­bile phones and telecom­mu­ni­ca­tion,” he said.

Min­is­ter Mandi­wanzira urged the ZDA to utilise Com­mu­nity In­for­ma­tion Cen­tres that the govern­ment set up in prov­inces across the coun­try to take in­for­ma­tion to the com­mu­ni­ties about di­a­betes.

It is es­ti­mated that about 10 per­cent of the pop­u­la­tion in Zim­babwe lives with di­a­betes with half the num­ber not aware of it. — New Ziana.

Min­is­ter Supa Mandi­wanzira

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