Disruptions to telecommunications services in Central Maewo

A helicopter helps ferry sand, coral and other material up to Ngota in inland Maewo to construct the UAP site. 

It is confirmed, Telecom Vanuatu Limited’s network services from Saratamata on East Ambae is down.

Alfred Lobu Wotlolan, TVL’s Corporate Support Officer in the company’s Commercial Department, confirmed the network service from their Saratamata-based tower is down.

However, he wasn’t sure if the service covered parts of Central Maewo.

People in Central Maewo area have been increasingly concerned that they have not been able to contact their families since Boxing Day, 2017 to now. Some are communicating using Facebook’s chat forum to send and receive messages.

When the Daily Post inquired about the situation with TVL last week, the response was that there was a technical problem at the network tower at Melsisi, Central Pentecost, believed to relay signal to Saratamata that services Central Maewo areas.

And the answer also was that they were aware of the problem. It remains to be seen if something will be done to sort the issue. But they said people should keep trying to reach their families by phone.

Another problem is that the people are losing money by buying credits and calling and not getting through and without knowing whether they will get the service back any time soon.

TVL is also currently building a new “UAP site” at Ngota in North Maewo which will help improve network services by the company. Wotlolan says TVL anticipates the site coming “on line by next month at the latest”.

It is understood that Digicel’s network services in Central Maewo are not much better either from TVL’s.

Jonas Cullwick, a former General Manager of VBTC is now a Senior Journalist with the Daily Post. Contact: jonas@dailypost.vu. Cell # 678 5460922

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