Government to roll out 25,000 public WiFi hotspots by 2027

ICT Cabinet Secretary Eliud Owalo during past conference in Nairobi.[Jonah Onyango, Standard]

The Government is set to roll out 25,000 public Wifi hotspots by 2027, Information and Communications (ICT) Cabinet Secretary Eliud Owalo has said.

Owalo was speaking during the 2023 International Telecommunications Union (ITU) Council meeting in Geneva, Switzerland on Tuesday, July 11, while representing President William Ruto.

"We seek to digitalise all Government services by the end of this year, we are setting up at least two world-class data centres and we are lowering the cost of calls and data bundles," said Owalo.

Kenya is also looking at seeting up more than 1,000 digital village digital hubs across the country, to allow ease of access to digitally enabled services and commercial opportunities

The government has also vowed to equip the youth with digital skills for digitally enabled jobs as well as sensitise everyone on the digital revolution.

Additionally, it is aiming to work with the private sector to produce affordable smart devices at an average cost of 40 USD (Sh5,650).

The mobile phones, Owalo says, will be on the market by December 31.

"We are deliberately reviewing our regulatory instruments, to encourage increased private sector investment and participation in ICT in Kenya from across the globe."

"Kenya highly appreciates ITU's initiatives in global digital transformation. We will continue to leverage the various digital transformation programmes by

ITU to augment our own strife for sustainable and meaningful universal connectivity in Kenya," he said.

The government unveiled more than 5,000 digitized services on the e-citizen portal over a week ago, to enhance users experience and improve public service delivery.