On March 11, the plenary of the Peruvian Congress unanimously passed in the first voting the bill that proposes to recognize as a “fundamental right the right to Internet access”. The head of the Constitution Committee, Luis Valdez Farías (Alianza para el Progreso), stated that the right to Internet access is an “essential condition” that will allow promoting scientific and technological development through training in information and communication technologies. For the reform to become law, it must go through a second vote. It is expected that this will be done by the plenary in the short term.
Valdez Farias also pointed out that “almost half of the world’s population does not have the means to connect to the Internet”, which means that Peruvian society does not have the necessary conditions to advance and exercise its rights in a “globalized and increasingly interconnected” world.
For his part, Congressman Alberto de Belaunde (Partido Morado), author of one of the bills that were unified in this initiative, defined the importance of considering the concepts “free” and “open”, since they have to do with an Internet free of censorship. He also stated that in certain countries there are “irrational” restrictions to the Internet. Arlette Contreras (No Agrupados) indicated that, as recognized by the UN, this tool will guarantee the education of the country’s children.
The text, which was approved by the plenary, unifies the following bills:
- 3156 – Constitutional Reform Law that recognizes the right of access to the Internet as a progressive fundamental right in the Political Constitution of Peru.
- 3607 – Constitutional reform law guaranteeing the right of access to a free and open Internet.
- 5600 – Law that recognizes the right of access to the Internet to guarantee accessible education and literacy for all Peruvians.
- 5843 – Law that recognizes the right to Internet access as a constitutional right.