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Bustling Githurai Market Latest To Go Digital In Ruto’s WiFi Rollout

Various traders are expected to go big online using free internet sponsored by the government

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The new five-storey Githurai Market in Ruiru Constituency, Kiambu County, has been installed with 12 active public Wi-Fi access points, just seven days after the official opening by President William Ruto. The Wi-Fi points can serve more than 4,000 users are are expected to benefit traders at the market which was officially opened on 5th August.

Speaking during an assessment tour of the market on Saturday 12th August, Stanley Kamanguya, CEO of the ICT Authority, noted that they had installed public Wi-Fi to drive e-commerce and the digital economy.

“We are here on tour to assess the installation and performance of the Public Wi-Fi as guided by the President during his tour here one week ago,” said Mr Kamanguya. “We are glad to report that the Wi-Fi has been installed, and traders can now use the Wi-Fi to drive their businesses online.”

“If you look at the 12 installed access points, more than 4,000 people, including traders and customers will be able to benefit. Owing to the fact that traders communicate with their customers online, the traders are now in a position to leverage online market platforms by using the Wi-Fi,” said Mr Kamanguya, adding that the ICT Authority has gone a step further to develop an online market platform to support traders.

“As the Authority, we have developed an online market platform known as Jikonnect Soko where traders can buy and sell.”

Mr. Kamanguya further added that through a partnership with the private sector, the government is seeking to develop 25,000 Wi-Fi hotspots to drive the digital economy. He noted that they have installed more than 450 Wi-Fi hotspots so far.

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During the tour, Hon. Kingara, Simon Nganga, MP of Ruiru Constituency, lauded the President and his administration for keeping the promise of delivering the installation of Wi-Fi.

“Last week, the President was here and he gave a directive that this market should get public Wi-Fi. We are glad that through the ICT Authority, we have the Wi-Fi up and running today. As we all know, the public Wi-Fi will benefit our traders to boost their businesses online.”

Mr Kingara noted that the digital development in the area is a game-changer for empowering the youth in the region.

we have developed an online market platform known as Jikonnect Soko where traders can buy and sell.

Ms Peris Wambui, Chairperson of Githurai Pamoja Traders, noted that public Wi-Fi would help them to exploit the online market space. “Usually, I buy data and sell to customers who are not in this region. As a result, the installation of this Wi-Fi will expand the wings of our businesses to reach broader markets.” she said.

The Public Wi-Fi project is one of the components of the Digital Economy Pillar in the Bottom Up Economic Transformation Agenda (BETA) and is being delivered through the ICT Authority. The Government, in partnership with private sector actors, plans to roll out 25,000 hotspots across the country and so improve connectivity and bring all citizens online.

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Bill Yaura is a Correspondent for Business Today. He can be reached on email: [email protected]
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