Wed | Jun 19, 2024

CEO of Universal Service Fund Dr Daniel Dawes has died

Published:Friday | May 24, 2024 | 2:13 PM
Dr Dawes was appointed CEO of the Universal Service Fund in January 2019. -Contributed photo

Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the state-owned Universal Service Fund (USF), Dr Daniel Dawes, has died. 

He was found unresponsive at his home in St Andrew earlier today. 

Head of the St Andrew Central police Senior Superintendent Marlon Nesbeth said "no foul play [is] suspected presently".

The scene is being processed. 

Chairman of the USF board Metry Seaga has expressed sadness at Dr Dawes' death. 

"A no-nonsense man that has worked hard to pull himself up the ranks. Just a horrible situation," he told The Gleaner on Friday afternoon. 

Seaga said earlier this month Dr Dawes graduated with his Doctor of Educational Leadership degree from the Delaware State University in the United States. 

In his tribute, Prime Minister Andrew Holness said Dr Dawes was "a visionary who devoted himself to bridging the digital divide and ensuring that every Jamaican had technology access".

"The public service has lost an exceptional leader. His work has helped to advance our communities and empower countless lives," he said in a Facebook post. 

Minister of Science, Energy, Telecommunications and Transport Daryl Vaz said he was "in shock" at Dr Dawes' "untimely passing". 

"He was not only dedicated to the work of the people but a man with a great presence. To his family and the staff of the USF, I send my deepest condolences and prayers as they go through this very devastating time,” said Vaz in a ministry statement. 

Dawes was appointed USF CEO in January 2019. 

He previously worked at the Transport Authority as managing director, and at the health ministry as chief food inspector.  

Dawes is a former lecturer at The University of the West Indies Global Campus, formerly open campus. 

He was also chairman of the Advisory Council for the Master of Public Health and the NSC in Nursing at the University of Technology, Jamaica. 

The USF is an agency of the Ministry of Science, Energy, Telecommunications and Transport. 

The USF is mandated to ensure Jamaicans have access to information and communication technology services such as Wi-Fi internet access. It is funded by a levy on domestic telecoms service providers. 

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