PEOPLE of Shortlands in Western Province, Isabel and Malaita expects to enjoy improved telecommunication service by mid this year thanks to the tax payers and government of Australia.
A total of six telecommunication towers that will help to improve communication between our islands will be constructed soon.
This new towers will cost Australia close to SBD $37.6 million.
It’s a huge money which the people of Australia have offered to support our people.
Poor communication has been a problem for Shortlands which shared the common border with Bougainville in Papua New Guinea (PNG) and Solomon Islands.
Movement of people through the border has been very active prior to the declaration of COVID two years.
Since the border has remained closed and is being monitored by our police.
But communication is very vital in the far western border.
This is same with Isabel and Malaita.
In light of the COVID outbreak in the country, communication is very important to ensure our rural communities continue to be updated with information.
By having good communication service these rural communities can get in touch with the authorities should they need help.
With the support of the Australian government, these selected communities will soon have access to better communication services.
The towers will cater for 3G and 4G services.
To seal the deal the Minister for Communication and Aviation, the Hon.Peter Shanel Agovaka and Australia’s Head of the Office of the Pacific Ewen McDonald exchanged signed copies of a funding arrangement on Tuesday.
The support to build the towers was requested by the Solomon Islands Government as part of its COVID-19 preparedness and response efforts.
Minister Agovaka said the project aligned with the Government’s National Development Strategy and the National Security Strategy.
“Enabling security, welfare, and connectivity for communities in remote parts of the country especially along the Western border is a key priority of my ministry.”
As a country we should be grateful for Australia’s ongoing support to improving connectivity here.
Indeed the support is a testimony to the strong partnership between the two countries in the telecommunications sector.
The Coral Sea Cable project is also a project which Australia had helped use to deliver improved internet connectivity to the people of this nation.
The new towers will utilise Ericsson mobile communications equipment, NEC microwave links and Australian-supplied.
Our Telekom has committed to installing, owning, operating, and maintaining the infrastructure as part of its broader mobile network.
Indeed the communities that will benefit from the project are excited.
Thus, we owe the people and government of Australia a lot.
For that we wish to say “Thanks a lot mate.’