Young Golfito resident takes on ICE and wins court victory

One resident of Urbanization Jorge Brenes Duran of Golfito, fed up with the inability to access Internet in her neighborhood, decided to take her complaint to the Sala Constitutional and won.

The surprise: She is only a minor.

Due to the young citizens determination, the Sala Constitutional has ordered the Costa Rican telecom company, Instituto Costarricense de Electricidad, to provide Internet access in that section of Golfito. The company is known as ICE.

According to the court document, the electric company has not provided the area with the proper infrastructure needed for Internet. The decision gives the general manager of Instituto Costarricense de Electricidad two months to complete a project financed by the Costa Rican telecommunications fund known as Fonatel. This project will assess the feasibility of installing telecommunications infrastructure in the community.

A noncompliance could result in a three-month to two-year imprisonment or a fine, the Poder Judicial said.

“ICE respects the decision, which seems to open a path so that Fonatel resources are assigned with specific purpose,” said Elbert Durán, director of communications, Thursday.

The office also maintained that workers there are not the ones who handle funding, and the blame of the lack of infrastructure should be given to the superintendent of telecommunications.

“As ICE is not the one who manages those funds, it should be considered that the court be ready to redirect the judgment to the Superintendencia de Telecomunicaciones, which is the administrator of these funds.” Durán said.

“ICE is evaluating that possibility,” he added.

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