Broadband lobby group IrelandOffline has voted to remain in existence following an extraordinary general meeting at the weekend. The organisation also plans to publish the results of an extensive survey into the state of broadband adoption in Ireland soon.
The group’s future had been in doubt over the summer following the resignation of former chairman Christian Cooke, who believed that IrelandOffline was no longer an effective means of securing affordable broadband for consumers through its lobbying efforts.
In a statement, however, the group maintained there was “an overwhelming view that IrelandOffline is now needed more than ever”. In the course of compiling its survey data the group claimed to have discovered that major obstacles still dog the widespread introduction and adoption of broadband across the country.
Damien Mulley was appointed chairman of IrelandOffline at Saturday’s meeting. He said: “Whilst there has been an impression of significant progress in broadband provision in Ireland, most of it is little more than papering over the cracks… the fact that less than 2pc of the population are broadband enabled is not something to boast about – in our opinion, it is a national disgrace.”
The group plans to release details of its survey, which polls the opinions of 1,300 consumers and small businesses, shortly and will also issue a proposal on solving some of the issues likely to be raised.
By Gordon Smith