President Jagdeo of Guyana has launched an One Laptop per Family initiativeÂ “to develop the countryâ€™s ICT sector”. Â The program has been in planning since last year, with the laptops provided by Chinese manufacturer Haier. Â 5000 have already arrived in Guyana, with plans for 22,000 more later this year. Â Their goal is to reach 90,000 families within two years.
Deployment of the first 1000 laptops began this week — as this is election season, most public discussion has been around whether it is simply an effort to buy votes by a the incumbent party (the PPP).
There is commentary at theÂ Stabroek News. Â A selection:
“This is a good initiative but it will not save the PPP from getting the boot in this election.”
“Its not like they are doing the people a favour, this is what they’re suppose to do for the citizens.Â Â Do they think they’ll get credit for it?”
“An independent audit into the distribution of these laptops will show a favor towards so called “rural” residents.”
“Hope they will also get free Internet access, and blog on this site.”