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Marcos admin prioritizes connectivity in underserved regions
Marcos admin prioritizes connectivity in underserved regions
Marcos admin prioritizes connectivity in underserved regions
by Mhillen Nicole Borja04 June 2023
Photo Courtesy: Jocelle Batapa Sigue

President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr's administration is committed to bridging the digital gap in the nation by focusing on the implementation of connectivity initiatives in geographically-isolated and disadvantaged regions (GIDAs), according to an official from the Department of Information Communications Technology (DICT).

Speaking at a news forum in Quezon City, DICT Undersecretary Jocelle Batapa-Sigue emphasized that the department is prioritizing connectivity projects in rural areas and specifically targeting GIDAs.

“Kung titingnan po natin, iyong lahat pong nilalatag at ginagastusan ng connectivity programs ng DICT ay hindi po sa urban areas because dito po, nandito na iyong commercial players. So iyong inuuna po natin are really the GIDA areas,” the DICT official said.

Batapa-Sigue highlighted the significance of the digital inclusivity campaign led by the Marcos administration in alignment with National ICT Month.


She revealed that the closing ceremonies of the month-long celebration, set for June 30, will take place on Sacol Island in Zamboanga City—an outlying destination in the country.

She proudly announced that Sacol Island has been recognized by the International Telecommunications Union as a potential site for a smart village, as it was equipped with internet access by the DICT last year.

“Napakalayong island pero maraming bata, maraming pamilya. Last year, first time in their lives, nakapag-send po, nakapag-post sa Facebook kasi nilagyan ng internet ng DICT. Doon po magtatapos iyong ating National ICT Month sa Sacol Island and I’m proud to announce that Sacol Island has been named by the International Telecommunications Union as a potential location to be as a smart village of the world,” she said.

“Hindi po namin iiwan itong mga isla na ito. Hahanap-hanapin namin hanggang ang bawat bata sa mga isla na ito ay makapag-Facebook o makapanood ng vlog or kung ano pa sa internet,” Batapa-Sigue added.


To underscore the importance of digital transformation in governance and economic development, President Marcos inaugurated the eGov PH Super App at Malacañang Palace on Friday.

Currently, Batapa-Sigue reported that internet connectivity coverage in the Philippines stands at approximately 73 percent. However, she stressed that although this number appears significant, it remains insufficient due to the intermittent nature of signals.

She emphasized that coverage is not the sole concern; other factors such as speed, latency, affordability, and internet accessibility are equally important.

“So, para sa amin, kahit malaki itong numero na ito, maliit pa rin kasi sabi mo nga napuputol iyong signal mo. So, it’s not only a question of coverage; it’s also about the question of speed, of latency, of affordability, of access to the internet,” she pointed out.


Furthermore, the DICT has launched a national broadband project, with the first landing station established in Baler, Aurora, which will ultimately provide nationwide coverage.

The recent launch of the National Fiber Backbone (NFB) Phase 1 Spectrum in Baler Cable Landing Station (CLS) marked the initial provision of high-speed internet connectivity in Luzon.

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