STATEMENT BY THE CITY’S EXECUTIVE MAYOR, PATRICIA DE LILLE
Today the City of Cape Town is delighted to announce it has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with network provider Cell C in partnership with Facebook which could pave the way for the expansion of public access Wi-Fi locations across the city.
The Mayoral Committee discussed a proposal from Cell C and has authorised myself as the Executive Mayor to enter into a Memorandum of Understanding with the telecommunications company.
This is a very exciting proposal which aims to take connectivity to communities that otherwise have no access to the internet. This is in line with the City’s goal to promote digital inclusion as part of our strategy to be the Digital Capital of Africa and to bridge the digital divide.
The MOU proposes to give Cell C access to City street pole infrastructure, Council-owned buildings and public spaces to assess what is possible and what could be done using the existing City infrastructure.
Cell C’s proposal will include possibly installing Wi-Fi access points on these street light poles, City of Cape Town buildings, bus stops, terminals and public transport hubs.
This is an exciting development to serve the needs of our growing city and to ensure that all of our residents are connected and are able to access Wi-Fi close to their homes.
’Cell C is always looking at ways to bring access to as many South Africans as we can. We know that this project will assist us in our mission to connect those who have not been able to access Wi-Fi before,’ said Cell C Chief Executive Officer, Jose Dos Santos.
As an opportunity City, we understand the needs of the 21st century and the importance of connectivity.
The provision of Wi-Fi is a key part of our integration strategies where we are connecting more people to services and opportunities.
We firmly believe that there is a positive correlation between the availability of internet access and the social and economic upliftment of communities.
Internet access and digital literacy are widely recognised as enablers of economic participation and improved educational outcomes.
For this administration, digital inclusion is important and in this regard we have already rolled out more than 890 km of fibre optic cables and connected over 300 City-owned buildings with Wi-Fi that is accessible to our residents.
We are committed, as intended by the City’s Organisational Development and Transformation Plan, to not only provide world-class basic services but to also enable widespread connectivity, especially for previously disadvantaged communities.