Dear Editor – Thanks for giving me the opportunity. I have been trying to raise my personal concern about the Solomon Islands Electricity Authority (SIEA) services through this medium for sometime.
So thanks for this offer.
This is related to the continuous power outage experienced in Honiara.
Although power was able to be restored now, late last year and early this year was somewhat worse for the city.
There have been break downs by the generator and its giving many household and businesses a whole lot of problem.
We have heard about the increase investment by SIEA and the recruitment of consultants to help restore the power services here in the country.
But that does not stop the problem happening.
At least there are continuous power disruptions being experienced in Honiara every now and again.
I don’t know when this city will continue to enjoy its power services.
Recently when there was power rationing, a lot of local businesses have suffered because they don’t have standby generators.
Many shops which sells frozen products like ice-cream, chicken, sausage and meat products are unhappy with the power disruption.
And it is affecting them badly.
Now, amidst the power problems, I noted with amusement the increasing number of new high class vehicles being purchased and used by officers within SIEA and also the numbers of hilux for the linesmen.
I know it costs a lot of money to purchase these vehicles.
While some may argue that the increasing number of vehicles is important for the officers to carry out their duties, I’m not convinced because of the wrong timing.
This is because the power problem had been there far too long. I know SIEA can buy a generator with the money they use to buy their new fleets.
I think there should be power improvement before the new flashy vehicles are being bought.
But for now, it seems theres more improvement that needs to be done to address power failure in Honiara and in the provinces.
In the meantime I urge the government, landowners and the funding agency to work on completing the Tina hydro-project because hopefully it would help with the power problem in the city.
Not only that I hope the cost would be reduced somewhat. I noted the continuous increase of the electricity charge over the past years as a result of rising fuel cost.
As such the country should also seek other alternative energy solutions.
As a growing city, the demand for electricity in the country is also rising and the country should plan for the future when it comes to energy consumption in Honiara.