DICT, Transco, Beneco roll out net service for gov't offices

Wednesday, January 09, 2019 12:00 AM    Views : 118by:Pamela Mariz Geminiano

Officials of the Department of Communications and Technology (DICT), Transmission Corporation (Transco) and the Benguet Electric Cooperative (Beneco) sign the memorandum of agreement (MOA) for the rollout of the 250MBps internet service to 14 pilot government offices in Baguio and La Trinidad town in Benguet province. In photo (L-R) are lawyer Rosan Rosero-Lee, Deputy Administrator of the National Electrification Administration (NEA); Beneco General Manager Gerardo Verzosa; Beneco Board president Rocky Aliping; DICT Undesecretary Denis Villorente; and DICT Assistant Secretary Alan Silor. (Photo courtesy of Carlito Dar/ PIA-CAR)

BAGUIO CITY -- The Department of Communications and Technology (DICT), Transmission Corp. (Transco), and the Benguet Electric Cooperative (Beneco) signed on Tuesday a memorandum of agreement (MOA) to implement the National Broadband Pilot Project (NBP) in Baguio and Benguet’s capital town La Trinidad that will provide high-speed internet access to government facilities.

To date, 11 out of the 14 initial priority government offices to be provided with internet have already been rolled out.

These are the Police Regional Office - Cordillera (PROCOR); La Trinidad municipal hall; Benguet Provincial Capitol; Department of Science and Technology (DOST); Benguet State University (BSU); Benguet General Hospital (BeGH); Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) – Agromet; PAGASA Radar; Baguio City Hall; Philippine La Trinidad municipal police station; Beneco Headquarters; National Grid Corp. of the Philippines (NGCP) La Trinidad substation; Baguio city police office; and the Bases Conversion Development Authority (BCDA) at Camp John Hay.

“Cordillera is one of the most underserved and unserved areas of other telcos (telephone companies) because of its topography. Our goal under the term of President Rodrigo Duterte is to be able to leverage electronic governance and roll out government services to the people without travelling," said DICT Undersecretary Denis Villorente during the signing held at Beneco headquarters.

The NBP pilot project is aimed at bringing internet service to far-flung and hard-to-reach areas, especially in the Cordillera, providing the service to government institutions.

“Not because you are located in a far-flung area does it mean that you cannot access government services, which is a big ‘no’ to the Duterte administration," Villorente said.

He added that "the government will not wait for big telcos to roll out their infra projects, we will do our best to provide quality services and bring it to the public."

Baguio City is one of the 33 identified priority growth areas of the DICT where the NBP pilot project will be implemented.

“This is our pilot project. Eventually, we will be launching projects on other sites in the whole of the Cordillera,” Villorente said.

Meanwhile, Alan Silor, DICT assistant secretary for operations and national program of free wi-fi in public places, said the government facilities have been provided with a 250 megabyte per second (MBps) internet connection that will make their services to the public even faster.

"Rest assured that this will be a continuing project, and we are hoping that we can expand it to other cooperatives. This is our first pilot project. We can still expand it, we just have to wait for the recommendation of NGCP and the National Electrification Administration (NEA)," Silor said.

In a press conference in December last year, Beneco assistant manager Melchor Licoben reported that distribution utility has laid down fiber optic cables as far as Mankayan town in Benguet, which is part of their franchise area.

The fiber optic lines are ready to accommodate internet service as embodied in the MOA with the DICT.


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