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NCA committed to extend Internet services to rural areas

The National Communication Authority (NCA) is committed to ensuring that
Internet facilities are extended to the rural areas to facilitate
effective teaching and learning of Information Communication Technology in
schools.

The Authority has, therefore, embraced the Television White Space
technology which can travel up to 10 kilometers irrespective of
vegetation, building and other objects.

Mr William Tevie, Director General, NCA, said ‘’ tablets, phones and
computers can all access wireless internet using Television White Space
(TVWS) through fixed or portable power stations.

Mr Tevie was speaking at the Public Consultation Workshop on TVWS in Accra
on Tuesday.

The workshop which attracted key players in the telecom industry and
television operators aims at promoting interaction and building on the
component of a proposed regulatory framework on TVWS.

Mr Tevie said apart from TVWS connecting people, the technology ‘’can make
connecting to home or work from another remote area a reality by offering
broadband signals capable of handling multiple devices as well as
transferring large data across long distances.

He said TVWS will encourage the creation of smart cities with
interconnected devices to home, schools, shopping centres, municipal areas
and more.’’

Mr Tevie said access to Internet connectivity was almost becoming basic
human right as consumers have come more dependent on it as means of
communication and as a link to other resources for everyday life.

However, he said, due to environmental obstacles and lack of financial
incentives, connectivity was scarce in some areas with low population
density.

‘’This results in expensive and complex networks with lack of options for
those in these unserved communities,’’ he said.

Mr Tevie said the NCA believes that with the emergence of TVWS, the issue
of inability to serve scarcely populated areas would gradually become a
thing of the past.

He said the NCA in 2013 collaborated with Google and other institutions to
carry out TVWS trials in Labadi and East Legon and the results of the
pilot initiatives has helped the Authority to determine its capabilities
in reaching far areas.

Mr Henry Kanor, a Director of Engineering, NCA, said the TVWS technology
would not dethrone broadband services in the country and rather ensure its
protection.

He said TVWS would help schools in rural areas especially those writing
ICT exams in Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE) as the
technology was cheaper.

Mr Kanor said TVWS is widely used in the Philippines where the country has
over 1,000 islands adding it had facilitated the transmission of data to
rural areas.

He, therefore, urged entrepreneurs to take advantage of the TVWS spectrum.

Mr Peter Djakwah, a deputy Manager of Engineering, NCA, said the increase
in the use of the Internet has potential of increasing Gross Domestic
Product (GDP).

He said it is important that the cost of using Internet was reduced to
attract larger population usage.

Source: GNA
https://www.ghanabusinessnews.com/2016/08/16/nca-committed-to-extend-internet-services-to-rural-areas/