Prime Minister, Brigadier (Ret’d) Mark Phillips, on Monday said that Guyana cannot be left behind in the drive to enhance global digitisation.
He said that the COVID-19 pandemic has amplified the importance of technological advancements and has forced its acceleration.
At a meeting at his office with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Resident Representative in Guyana, Jairo Valverde and Senior Advisor, Jose Eguren, the Senior Government Official noted that the ICT access and E-Services for Hinterland, Poor and Remote Communities project is of extreme importance.
“Eliminating the digital divide is a part of development in any country…COVID has forced accelerated digitisation on the entire world and Guyana cannot afford to be left behind.”
The E-Services project is a collaboration between the Office of the Prime Minister and the UNDP.
Prime Minister Phillips said that the “project has the potential of having us achieve the goal of connecting our hinterland, poor and remote communities and we have identified 200 of those communities to be connected and to benefit from everything that comes under the umbrella of e-governance”.
Mr Valverde said that once fully implemented, the project will not only be rewarding, but will significantly boost the ICT environment across the country.
“The impact of the project will go beyond what we have been able to imagine, because once those communities have the hubs and once the Government’s e-services are developed, it’s going to improve the integration of all Guyana.”
The officials also discussed several UNDP projects in Guyana and future collaborations.
UNDP’s support for Guyana currently targets capacity-building and the strengthening of legal and institutional frameworks; the phasing out of ozone depleting substances; the mitigation of land degradation through sustainable land management; increased energy access for hinterland communities; enhanced biodiversity protection in the gold mining sector; and the strengthening of capacities in disaster response and risk reduction. (Office of the Prime Minister)