The government has said lack of mobile phone network coverage is slowing development projects in many parts of the country.

Minister of Information, Mark Botomani, said this during the commissioning of Last Mile Rural Connectivity Project in which the government is constructing 136 towers of mobile phone network.

Botomani said easy mobile phone communication could spur development in all aspects of life.

“Wide mobile network coverage would help farmers connect to the world and easily find markets for farm inputs and products alike. Easy connectivity would also make it easier for people of the country to have access to important messages on health, education and other aspects of life,” he said.

When erected, the towers would be rented out to mobile phone operators and the broadcast media.

Botomani hailed the Chinese Government for funding the project, saying improving Information Communications Technology (ICT) is among the government’s top priorities.

“You see, improving access to ICT services is one of the top priorities of the government and that is why we believe the initiative has come at the right time,” he said.

During the exercise, Botomani commissioned a tower in Lipenga Village, Senior Chief Kanduku, in the district.

Member of Parliament for the area Nicholas Dausi, who is also Homeland Security Minister, hailed the government saying the tower would ease connectivity challenges.

“It is like we are dreaming that people can have easy access to mobile network. We will no longer be climbing trees like monkeys to access mobile phone network. We will take care of the tower so that it lasts long,” he said.

Huwei Technologies is implementing the project to the tune of $66 million.

The commissioning of the project was held under the theme ‘Connecting Everyone, Everywhere’.

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