A South African consortium of companies, Edgy Nicollo Group, has shown interest in partnering with the Lusaka City Council in a pilot project to provide free wi-fi services to residents of
Zambian High Commissioner to South Africa, Emmanuel Mwamba last week led a delegation of eight members from Edgy Nicollo Group, among them William Makgatho, the Technical Director and Gugulethu Gwamanda, the Project Director.
The delegation held talks with officials from the Ministry of Local Government and Housing, led by the Permanent Secretary, Mr. Amos Malupenga and Lusaka City Council officials led by the Town Clerk, Mr. Alex Mwansa, on their expression of interest to provide the service.
The Council will identify a service provider to help with the technical aspect of the project and once implemented, the Wi-Fi project will help the council brand its image, improve service provision and also enhance interaction with members of the public on the various services offered and on different issues affecting the community.
Mr. Malupenga said government appreciates initiatives such as the one being offered by Nicollo Group and hoped that it helps in creating an enabling environment for Councils to effectively and efficiently provide services to the general public.
“As government, these are the kind of projects we encourage because they keep councils in direct contact with people in the communities,” Mr. Malupenga said.
Mr. Mwamba said he bought into the idea when he was approached by officials from Edgy Nicollo Group; especially on the aspect that the consortium has so far partnered with three cities in South Africa, among them Ekurhuleni Municipality who already have a sister-to-sister understanding with the Lusaka City Council.
“I was particularly excited when I was approached by Edgy Nicollo Group and when they informed me that they have an understanding with the Lusaka City Council on a sister to sister basis and basing on what I have seen with what they have done with Ekurhuleni Municipality where service provision has been made so easy through the use of Wi-Fi; I decided to set up this appointment,” Mr. Mwamba said.
And Mr. Mwansa said he was impressed with the free Wi-Fi service project offer by Edgy Nicollo Group because of the wonderful benefits that it was promising and it will bring to the general public, especially the youth.
The Town Clerk said the free Wi-Fi service will also help the general public to electronically pay for various services provided by the local authority such as property rates, ground rent, business permits, fire certificates, marriage certificates, building plans, firearms, liquor and health permits e.g., restaurant operating licenses; among others.
The Council will identify hotspot zones such as parks and community centres across the city for Wi-Fi services to enable members of the public to interact with the council for efficient and effective public service delivery.
Wi-Fi is a term for types of wireless local area networks (WLAN) and is widely used in businesses, agencies, schools, and homes as an alternative to a wired LAN.
Wi-Fi is the name of a popular wireless networking technology that uses radio waves to provide wireless high-speed Internet and network connections.