Rwanda is partnering with a UK-based communications company to launch a satellite that will provide broadband internet to schools in remote areas, Rwandan Ministry of ICT and Innovation said on Wednesday.
The satellite, which is nicknamed “Icyerekezo’’ meaning vision in English, is expected to be sent into orbit at around 11:30 p.m. (Rwandan time) on Wednesday from a spaceport on the Atlantic coast of French Guiana, said the ministry in a statement.
Launching the satellite is a symbol of Rwanda’s commitment to build the local space industry, build local capacity, inspire the younger generation and prepare to usher Rwanda into a hyper-connected future, said the statement.
Without a means of connection, economies stagnate, education falls behind, and development slows significantly compared to connected regions, it said.
The government of Rwanda has made remarkable efforts to invest in broadband connectivity and sees this as a great opportunity to continue connecting underserved communities, said Rwandan Minister of ICT and Innovation Paula Ingabire in the statement.
Rwanda’s choice to invest in space technologies is part of its broader mission to bridge the digital divide by providing equal digital opportunities to rural and remote communities, said the minister.