More than four years after an agreement was signed between Guyana and Brazil for a fibre
optic cable to link Government facilities, the project appears to have collapsed because of technical issues. It would appear certain now that billions of dollars have gone down the drain, unless Government finds a way to rescue the venture.
According to a Government source close to the project, continuous breakage to the cable has left the project in limbo. Time and again the deadlines have been pushed back. The cable passes through difficult terrain along the Linden/Lethem trail. Logistics have reportedly caused major headaches for contractors.
It was indicated that initially little thought went into the project as Government itself reported that cables not of the correct lengths were ordered. Independent supervisors hired to monitor the project were reportedly fired.
Physical works for the laying of 560 kilometres of cable began in April 2011. Poor weather conditions and the absence of appropriate equipment were cited for the slothfulness of contractors. Several of them were fired. Government had even reportedly resorted to foreign help in moving the cable project forward.
On the Brazil side, Globonet, a sidsidiary of Oi, the largest telephone company of that neighbouring country, had landed the fibre optic cable.
Under the agreement, Guyana was reportedly paying US$150,000 annually for internet connectivity. It is unclear what is happening to these fees now that the project remains incomplete.
The more-than-US$32M project is headed by Alexei Ramotar, son of the country’s President. There has not been any update coming from the project director in recent times.
The E-Government project was touted to feature a data centre, a transmission network and data network. The data centre, or control centre, is to be housed in the compound of Castellani House, in the same building that is used for the Central Intelligence Agency.
Under the US$32M project to link Government offices and facilities, the transmission network stretches from Moleson Creek on the Corentyne Coast to Charity on the Essequibo Coast, reportedly using fibre optic cable of the Guyana Power and Light Inc. The Brazil cable is part of the network too. Some 54 towers have already been built.
By way of the access network, all major Government facilities in the coverage areas are intended to be connected via fibre optic and/or 4G wireless Cellular services.
Government had announced that the connection would have allowed for, in addition to connectivity, a range of services such as “E-Health” allowing for video consultation, movement of information from one health centre to another and tracking disease outbreaks.
Regarding security, the project would allow quick transmission of information including video and data between police stations.
In education, the project would set up an “E-library” which would allow for access to textbooks and other teaching aids that can be used by students and schools, thereby lowering cost.
Oct 15, 2018Eagles Basketball Club and Pacesetters played both matches contested on Saturday at the Burnham hard court in the Second and First Division of the Rainforest Water/Malta Supreme/Georgetown Amateur...
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