By Mary Makhiringa
Minister of Information, Civic Education, Communications and Technology, Mark Botomani Thursday underscored the need for rural areas to have access to internet saying it was key to development.
He said internet has become the biggest way of sharing information nowadays, hence the need for people to be connected.
Botomani made the remarks in Balaka at Nseche Primary School after laying a foundation stone for the construction of a Tele-centre.
“Information is being shared online, you talk of selling goods, connecting to possible buyers and all this is done online. If people from the rural areas are connected, they will join many people sharing information online, and this will enhance their development,” he pointed out.
Botomani said Government recognizes the various roles that technology plays in the country that was why his Ministry was tirelessly working to connect the rural areas.
“My Ministry was doing this in two forms. We are going to connect a constituency. We are launching where the entire constituency will be connected. We have to connect a school where schools are connected for students to access,” the Minister added.
Malawi Communication Regulatory Authority (MACRA) Board Chair, Rev. Alex Maulana said their role was to implement what has been planned.
“As MACRA, we work hand in hand with the Ministry in connecting the rural areas through the establishment of Tele-centres.
“We will pump in K50 million for construction of the Tele-centre and the amount will go up as we will furnish the house with computers,” he disclosed.
The Board Chair asked the contractor to do a very good job and also that the community should look after the materials which would be brought at the centre once finished.
Council Chairperson for Balaka, Stevie Sauka hailed Government for the initiative saying it would help to transform the area.
“This Tele-centre will not come alone, it will come with electricity as you can see this area is not connected,” he revealed.