JIS News

Cabinet has approved the appointment of Northern Caribbean University President, Dr. Herbert Thompson, as chairman of the Universal Access Fund Limited, with immediate effect.
Information and Development Minister, Colin Campbell, made the announcement at yesterday’s (May 1) post Cabinet press briefing held at Jamaica House.
The Universal Access Fund Limited is a government entity, which collects a levy on incoming international calls to Jamaica. The revenue to be earned from the charges, which is projected at $1 billion, will go towards financing the implementation of the national e-learning project, which is designed to enhance the education process through the use of information technology.
The project will be implemented over the next three to four years and will target grades 7-11, dealing in the first instance with the core curriculum, which comprises six subjects that every school is mandated to do, regardless of the type of institution.
When fully implemented, schools will have the benefit of informative material and e-learning mechanisms, including video conferencing and video presentations, which will be used to enhance the learning environment.
Since June of last year, all telecommunications carriers have been required to pay a service charge of US$0.03 per minute on all incoming international minutes for termination on fixed wired networks, and US$0.02 on all incoming international minutes for termination on cellular networks.
Under sections 38 and 39 of the Telecommunications Act (2000), provision is made for the imposition of universal service charge to a maximum of five per cent of revenues, for the establishment of a fund to provide subsidized access to the telecommunication services. This is under an agreed universal service programme, geared toward the achievement of defined national developmental objectives.
Dr. Thompson is a Director of the Bank of Nova Scotia, Commissioner for the National Commission on Science and Technology, an external examiner of the University of the West Indies, and a member of the University Council of Jamaica.
He succeeds Colin Campbell who resigned on being appointed as a government Minister.

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