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PIA Press Release

LGU Kalinga paves way to accessible ICT services

by Gigi Dumallig

TABUK, Kalinga (23 October) -- With the objective to provide easier, affordable and friendlier access to Information Communication Technology (ICT) services to the public, the provincial government will be launching the Kalinga Community e-Center (CeC), the first government operated internet shop in the province by February next year.

This project was made possible after Kalinga was selected as one of the e-LGU pilot sites for the CeC by the National Computer Center (NCC). The provincial government through Governor Dominador T. Belac Sr. signed a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) with the NCC last October 3, 2006 for the establishment of the center.

The NCC has provided four computer units that include a server for the initial operation of the Kalinga CeC.

In line with this, Belac through an Executive Order mandated the creation of a core group tasked to plan and supervise the operation of the center. The NCC in cooperation with the Development Academy of the Philippines (DAP) immediately conducted a Business and Strategic Planning Workshop for the group from October 9-13, 2006.

During the five-day workshop, Finance Officer of Center for Sustainable Human Development, Arlene Reyes clarified that the center does not intend to compete with private ICT providers since this is not a profit-oriented outfit.

She said that CeCs are designed to provide the general public affordable access of various ICT and on-line services and other functions which the core group could design to be beneficial to the community.

To make the e-center different from other Internet shops, the group schemed that the center will be offering local research materials and local information on job search and other updates aside from the regular services.

Through the collaboration of the different government agencies, the public will also be provided access to government services for both national and local. The center is likewise being designed to provide tutorials especially to the out of school youths and other interested clients to provide them basic skills in computer operation and on Internet surfing.

By February, the public is expected to avail of the following services from the center: e-mail, chat, research, printing/scanning, photo editing/graphic designs, e-card/on-line loan availment and PC calls which compared to regular phone calls is more advance and far cheaper.

These services will be offered with free one-on-one tutorials for first timers and additional instructions for those who have basic skills in computer and in Internet surfing. Short tutorial courses could also be accommodated in coordination with the CeC core group who will also be functioning as the Board of Directors for the establishment.

Aside from Reyes, the other two resource speakers were DAP Associate Project Manager Mary Sagapan and Regional IT Coordinator Mark Anthony Portabes.

The CeC project is a component of the e-LGU project of the NCC of the national Government. It hopes to aid students, as well as adults, in raising computer knowledge and skill levels, and to provide essential/efficient ICT related services to the community. (PIA-Kalinga) [top]

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