Failure to deliver on National Broadband Plan a threat to rural Ireland’s future

CORK North West TD, Michael Moynihan has harshly criticised the Government’s failure to deliver on successive broadband promises, and highlighted the difficulties faced by rural Ireland as a result of this inaction.

“In April 2015, Minister Alex White claimed that the construction of a universal broadband network would commence in 2016 and be completed by 2021 at the very latest.

“It’s now mid-2017, and the contract for the National Broadband network has not even been awarded yet. The current Minister, Denis Naughten must know that he is in serious trouble, as he is point blank refusing to even provide a deadline by which the contract will be finalised. As a result, at least 542,000 premises, across the country have no clue when they might be able to access broadband services.

“This is absolutely appalling. High-speed broadband is not a luxury; it is a necessity for everyday life.

“There are areas of North Cork that have little to no access to quality broadband. Why is Minister Naughten continuing to deprive rural business owners of the ability to compete in the modern world? This is stymying their ability to expand and potentially employ new people.  Also, does he not realise that broadband is crucial for school children to access online educational content?

“Ultimately, the people of rural Ireland will hold Minister Naughten, and his Fine Gael and Independent Alliance colleagues to account on their failures to deliver the National Broadband Plan,” concluded Moynihan.

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