MPs to discuss broadband rollout plans

The MPs will be looking to the Telecommunications and Postal Services Ministry to flesh out R740 million.

FILE. Department of Telecommunications and Postal Services Minister Siyabonga Cwele. Picture: EWN.

CAPE TOWN - Members of Parliament (MPs) will be looking to the Telecommunications and Postal Services Ministry to flesh out the government's R740 million broadband rollout plan.

President Jacob Zuma announced in his State of the Nation Address (Sona) last week that the government will fast track the implementation of the first phase of the initiative, which involves connecting more than 5,000 government facilities in eight district municipalities over three years.

Minister Siyabonga Cwele and his department have been accused of undermining Parliament by repeatedly snubbing the relevant portfolio committee's request to discuss broadband rollout.

Committee chairperson Mmamoloko Kubayi expressed her frustration after the latest no-show last month.

"We have resolved the issue with the minister in terms of the attendance. We are happy and have literally sat down and explained from our side the importance of accountability."

She says the committee is hoping to schedule a meeting with the department soon.

"We will definitely interact with the minister and the department to get more details and more plans on how it is going to be done, what's going to happen to the areas that will not be government buildings, how they're going to bring together other stakeholders and what their role will be."