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Guyana’s e-government trapped in ‘limbo’

10 Dec 2014

Guyana’s USD32 million-plus e-government project has ‘collapsed’ due to the number of technical problems encountered in installing the fibre-optic network, Kaieteur News Online reports. The project, which encompasses an overland fibre link to Brazil, a 4G Long Term Evolution (LTE) network for last mile access and fibre-optic backbone network linking the towers, was launched in 2011 and has encountered numerous logistical and technical difficulties. Consequently, an unnamed government source close to the project says that the programme has been left in limbo. The project has already cost the Guyanese government millions of dollars, but is unusable in its current state and will need further investment to achieve its original goals. As noted by TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database, the Brazil-Guyana link was reported as being ‘90% ready’ in June 2012 and a cross-border connection was achieved in November that year. More than two years on however, the cable is still not operational. Similarly, the 54 towers have been built for the LTE network, but other problems have prevented the activation of the system. One of the most expensive recurring problems is that of damage to the parts of the fibre network that have been installed, either by careless construction workers or deliberately by vandals looking to salvage copper. The programme has also faced problems with contractors – the government was forced to fire its first batch of contractors due to the slow rate of progress, lack of the necessary equipment and shoddy standard of work – as well as myriad logistical issues.


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