The South African government’s plan to have every household getting 10GB of free data a month appears to be a ‘pipedream’ for now.
Minister of Communications and Digital Technologies Khumbudzo Ntshavheni promised that the government would provide 10GB of free data to every household in South Africa regardless of income level.
She made the promise during a joint State of the Nation debate on Tuesday, 15 February 2022.
The basic data allocation will be similar to the provision of essential municipal water and electricity services to needy households.
In a written response to parliamentary questions from Zandile Majozi of the Inkatha Freedom Party, Ntshavheni did not provide the exact date when the plan will be rollout.
“A specific feasibility study relating to the 10GB data has not been undertaken, however, the SA Connect Phase 2 proposal borrows on the tenets of universal access to basic and essential services (e.g. water, electricity and data being the next step),” Ntshavheni wrote.
“Recognizing the negative impact of the digital divide, especially in the rural and underserviced areas, the statement relating to the allocation of 10GB is a statement of intent to address this divide.”
Ntshavheni added that the proposed timeline is in parallel to the rollout of the SA Connect Revised Model, which is planned to be completed within the next 3 years starting from 01 April 2022.