Operators must have adequate conditions to invest and deploy communication networks.

Operators must have adequate conditions to invest and deploy communication networks

Within the framework of President Gustavo Petro’s announcements to assume the management of public services for three months, it was brought up that connectivity also falls within said temporary mission.

Operators must have adequate conditions

That is how he announced the ‘Connectivity Communities’, which apparently would be part of a concept that brings the project of the National Development Plan, in whose section ‘Connectivity Strategy’ it speaks of “creating conditions for the provision of internet service that promote the inclusion of local and regional actors”, which initially contemplates the thousands of small regional telecommunications operators, but which, in the words of the head of state, would now also include community action boards.

Regarding fiber optics to bring connectivity, President Petro asked at an event in Norte de Santander: “Why can’t community action install it?” in a message understood that the communities are in charge of installing the last mile connectivity.

In principle, the Government’s interest and focus on bridging the connectivity gap is commendable, which happens, as the President has well in mind, through the coverage of telecommunications networks.

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However, he errs in believing that this should be the mission of the communities. And not. For that technical part, there are expert companies with the knowledge and resources to do it.

What the communities, the territorial entities, must do is acquire a strong commitment with this government that wants to connect them, with the indicators of appropriation, use, and exploitation of connectivity to digitize their territories; complying with the training of communities, of their businesses, of digitally trading their products, promoting their tourism on the web, training their young people in digital skills, with the obligation to present progress, figures, real and tangible data that they are committed to with the knowledge society that the President wants for the country, equitably.

Perhaps the previous efforts to close the digital divide have failed for this reason: the passivity and welfare attitude of the regions that sit and wait for them to bring them connectivity, computers, applications, trainers, build digital centers, and provide them with furniture, anyway.

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And what do they put? What will the leaders in the territories commit to?

Let it be the opportunity, this time, for the virtuous formula to work: that operators have the favorable conditions to invest and deploy communications networks (as Minister Sandra Urrutia and her spectrum renewal models have been doing well, for example ); and that the communities are responsible for making such an effort truly appropriate.

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