Dagupan City is one of the Local Government Units (LGUs) benefitting from the Department of Information and Communications Technology’s (DICT) Free WiFi for All Program.

Dagupan residents have been enjoying free WiFi service at the city plaza since March 22, 2020.

Last 24 January 2020, DICT Secretary Gregorio B. Honasan II and Dagupan City Mayor Brian C. Lim signed a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) for the installation of free WiFi in public places in Dagupan.

According to the agreement, the DICT is set to provide 10 megabits per second of bandwidth per identified location in the city.

Under phase one of the collaboration, bandwidth from the DICT Provincial Office is transmitted to Dagupan City Hall, which will then be distributed to eight other sites through Wireless IP Radio Transmission. These include the City Health Building; Dagupan City National High School; Pantal Barangay Hall, Library and Health Center; Bolosan Barangay Hall, Library and Health Center; Bonuan Boquig Barangay Hall, Library and Health Center; Salisay Barangay Hall, Library and Health Center; Tabeng Barangay Hall, Day Care and Health Center; and Mangin Barangay Hall, Day Care and Health Center.

 “The DICT is committed to assisting local government units in providing Internet connectivity to their citizens, especially those who proactively collaborate with the Department for faster infrastructure and service roll-out. With Free Wi-Fi for All in Dagupan, we hope to help the locality’s transition to the new normal, among others,” Secretary Honasan said.

The DICT has earlier installed free Wi-Fi at Dagupan City People’s Astrodome prepared by the city government as a Persons Under Investigation (PUI) Management Center. This is part of the Department’s efforts of providing free Internet connectivity and access to COVID-19 testing centers, quarantine facilities, and control centers across the country.

At present, bandwidth distribution to the different barangays was put on hold and was diverted to the COVID-19 quarantine sites at the People’s Astrodome and Region 1 Medical Center in Barangay Bonuan Binloc, according to Dagupan City Public Information Office.

With the Dagupan City Sangguniang Panlungsod Resolution No. 5945, last 30 June 2020, Dagupan City Mayor Marc Brian C. Lim is also set to negotiate with private sector providers for the provision of supplemental free Wi-Fi services in strategic places in the city, furthering the city’s initiative for digital connectivity.

In addition, Dagupan is also fostering the roll out of Common Towers for connectivity throughout the entire city. This is in line with the recently issued Department Circular (DC) No. 008, s. 2020 or the guidelines on Shared Passive Telecommunications Tower Infrastructure, which is expected to accelerate cell site roll-out across the country by Independent Tower Companies.

Dagupan is also one of the 25 digital cities identified as potential or key cities outside Metro Manila for IT-BPM investments under the Digital Cities 2025 program of the DICT. Dagupan City and 24 other cities shall be transformed into ICT hubs that shall serve as business and innovation centers and will receive support from the government and the private sector to ensure that each location reaches its potential. These new locations will not only motivate existing players to expand outside Metro Manila but also encourage new investors and locators to set up shop in the country—creating more jobs for Filipinos across the nation. These digital cities will bring the Philippines a step closer towards becoming a more digitally-enabled nation, one that continues to be globally competitive and relevant as a prime investment destination.

“The DICT is optimistic of the enthusiasm demonstrated by Dagupan City, especially of its leadership, Mayor Brian Lim, in improving Internet connectivity for their people. Mayor Lim’s digitalization initiatives, such as this active collaboration with us, complement directly the DICT’s mission given by the President himself—of connecting government to other governments-domestic and global, government to businesses, government to citizens, and everybody to each other,” Secretary Honasan explained. “With these developments, we aim to help improve, not only the Internet connectivity, but also the state of the country’s socio-economic welfare through ICT in support of the President’s Balik Probinsya, Balik Pag-Asa Program,” Honasan added.