The South African government’s plan to have every household getting 10GB of free data a month appears to be a ‘pipedream’ for now.
Khumbudzo Nathshavheni, Minister of Communications and Digital Technologies promised that 10GB of data would be provided free of charge to all households in South Africa, regardless of their income.
The promise was made during a joint State of the Nation discussion on Tuesday 15 February 2022.
Basic data allocation will be the same as providing essential municipal water or electricity services to households in need.
In a written response to parliamentary questions Zandile Majozi, Inkatha Freedom Party, did not specify the exact date at which the plan would be implemented.
“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 said that the timeline was proposed in parallel with the rollout the SA Connect Revised Model. The latter is scheduled to be completed within three years beginning on 01 April 2022.