Mandatory community service for adult laptop users
- Users to pay US$400 if laptop is lost or stolen
The government’s One Laptop Per Family (OLPF) envisages mandatory community service as a condition for receiving the laptops.
According to the Project Plan of February 2010, Guyana currently ranks as the country with the second lowest in the number of computers per 100 people.
It states that an OLPF initiative of 50,000 computers would move Guyana to the second highest level of computer saturation, just behind the most developed countries. The government says it intends to distribute 90,000 laptops.
“So while students are earning computers, communities are getting cleaner streets, parks and painted schools,” the project plan, seen by Kaieteur News states.
Further, those who lose their laptops will have to pay US$400 or engage in community service as a penalty.
According to a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), which recipients are required to sign on collecting the laptops, all adult users shall take part in and successfully complete “Community Engagement” to the project.
The community service, intended to support social and community development, will be managed through a facility managed by the government.
‘The community service is mandatory and will be considered as part consideration for the joint ownership of the laptop and the training program(me),” the MOU states.
In addition, where the laptop becomes lost or stolen while in possession of the user, the “primary user” would be responsible for its full replaced at the cost of US$400 (US$100 more than the government estimates it will buy the laptops for), or alternatively, the government will determine if the user should do community service as repayment for the laptop.
The “primary user” is defined as one or both adult parents who will be the custodian of the laptop and be responsible for its proper use. In cases where there is no adult parent, the eldest child of the family would be considered the “primary user.”
In cases where the user would have performed community service for the period of time that is deemed mandatory by the MOU and decides that he no longer wishes to continue with the programme, he “shall be entitled to any compensation or remuneration for his service to the community.”
The MOU states that the laptop is intended for learning and developmental purposes and “shall not be used for any illegal activities, pornography and hacking.”
The “primary user” would be solely responsible for any misuse, loss, or damage of the laptop by any other user of his household.
The “primary user” must complete three months of training and at the end would be evaluated. It would then be determined if the “primary user” would be the custodian of the laptop and allowed to take it home.
If the person is not allowed to take the laptop home, he could use it at a facility identified by the government.
The “primary user” would be required, annually, to register his details as is requested on the online registration system to confirm that the laptop is still in his possession.
After the “primary user” begins his/her training, the onus would be on him/her to ensure that at least two additional users of the same household or community become computer literate.
Whenever the laptop becomes damaged or ceases to work, the person must immediately report this to the government, which will determine if it is damaged due to manufacturer defect.
Where the laptop is found to be defective due to manufacturer’s defect, it will be replaced once it is in the warranty period of one year.
The MOU could be modified or amended by mutual consent.