How the Kenyan government can encourage Internet use in rural areas

Although Kenya has a larger number of Internet users in this region of Sub Saharan Africa most of these users are concentrated in the urban areas. This is because people in the rural areas lack proper infrastructure to enable them to use the Internet effectively. In most rural areas in Kenya the network is very slow because most Internet providers have not invested properly to provide reliable networks to people in these areas.

This has been so because the government has not done anything to eliminate the notion that rural areas are not economically viable for high speed Internet connection. The government and the stake holders have very big role to play in promoting high speed connectivity in rural areas in Kenya, many young people who would like to live in the rural areas are forced to move to the urban areas where they are bound to get better services.

In order for the government of Kenya to encourage Internet use in rural areas, good infrastructure should be put in place. This will encourage young people who use the Internet for their lively hood in town to migrate to rural area where other facilities are cheap. For example people who earn their money online can be encouraged to open their offices in rural areas where rent and food is cheap than in urban areas.

Service providers who provide high speed Internet in rural areas can be given a tax relief to encourage them to offer these services in the rural areas. Tax relief will attract many companies to offer high speed network in the rural areas thus opening up these regions for the share of the Internet revenue. Many young people who live in the rural have what it takes to effectively use the Internet but they lack good infrastructure.

Power is another big hindrance in effective use of the Internet in rural areas. Many people cannot afford to connect power in their homes because of high costs of connection. The government should encourage the importation of many solar powered laptops in Kenya because solar power is readily in Kenya. Imports of solar powered laptops should not be taxed to lower the cost of these laptops.

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