The Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) Mindanao Cluster 1 (Region IX and BASULTA) is proclaimed Champion at the World Summit on Information Society (WSIS) Prizes 2022, a global contest hosted by the International Telecommunications Union (ITU).

Its project, “Free WiFi for All in Geographically Isolated and Disadvantaged Areas in Western Mindanao”, was named champion under the “Information & Communications Infrastructure” category. It is the only Philippine project that made the final cut out of 1,000 competing entries worldwide.

The submitted entry is a part of the Department’s Free Wi-Fi for All program, an initiative that strives to provide free internet connection in public spaces nationwide. It is a key component of the Digital Infrastructure Program, the flagship program of the DICT, which aims to strengthen the digital infrastructure of the country, provide inclusive connectivity, reduce the digital divide, and improve public services.

“The DICT MC1 has certainly made a mark for their third consecutive win in the WSIS Prizes 2022. We, at DICT, congratulate them for yet another achievement that will surely serve as motivation for the Department to continue building the country’s digital landscape,” DICT Acting Secretary Emmanuel Rey R. Caintic commented.

This victory marks the third consecutive year that the DICT Regional Office IX & BASULTA takes home the worldwide ICT award for the country. The DICT Office also received the Champion Project award at WSIS for its projects “Zamboanga Digital Hub” and “Enabling Educators in Remote Teaching and Learning Training Program” for 2021 and 2020, respectively.

The WSIS Prizes 2022 is an exceptional international recognition of stakeholders with distinguishing projects as winners for the implementation of WSIS outcomes on the support and achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The official awarding ceremony will be held in Geneva, Switzerland on May 31, 2022.