BAGUIO CITY – The local government will embark on digital transformation to cope with the advancement of information and communication technology as part of the efforts of the city to achieve the present administration’s 15-point agenda particularly in speeding up government action.
Mayor Benjamin Magalong ordered an assessment and evaluation of the local government’s internet connectivity to be undertaken by a third party to ascertain the aspects which need improvement to achieve the projected digital transformation in the city.
He stressed the need for the city government to be at par with other highly urbanized cities in internet connectivity to speed up the transactions in the different offices for the delivery of quality services to the people from all walks of life. The city chief executive gave the city’s technical people from the Management Information Technical Division under the City Budget Office ample time to do an inventory of the internet connectivity in the different offices, the different service providers, the internet speed being provided to the city, among other aspects of connectivity so that policy makers and decision makers will be guided on what actions to take in achieving the goal of digital transformation in the city.
He also tasked Secretary to the Mayor Engr. Philip Puzon as the focal person for said project.
According to the mayor, it is important to convene the Local Zoning Board of Adjustments and Appeals (LZBAA) to possibly grant exemptions to telecommunication towers in the different parts of the city to improve the telecom providers’ signals and services by providing higher internet speeds for users, especially those living in remote areas in the city.
The mayor admitted having personally talked to Manuel V. Pangilinan on the alleged reports that telecommunication companies are not interested to expand their facilities in the city which was belied by the latter. He said Pangilinan pointed to the problems being encountered by service providers such as the tedious requirements imposed by the city government in the put up of towers under the city’s existing zoning ordinance.
The city mayor said the part of improving the connectivity in the city is ensuring the presence of telecommunication towers within prescribed distances based on industry standards so that the efficiency of the signals will not be compromised.
Currently, the city government is spending some P200,000 to P300,000 monthly for several internet service providers for the different offices but a common complaint of the users is the alleged poor internet service.
Among the identified problems affecting the poor internet service in the City Hall are the outdated desktop computers procured over a decade and a half ago, the low bandwidth provided by the internet service providers and the outdated units of equipment in the central server of the city government.
Internet service providers have started increasing the bandwidth for the local government to improve the internet connectivity of the different offices hopefully improving their service delivery./Dexter A. See