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Freetown, 20 June (SLENA): The Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Information and Communications, Mr. Sheku A. Tamu, has acknowledged that environmental impact assessment study is key to the success of any development project in a country.
Speaking on behalf of the Minister of Information and Communications, Alhaji Ibrahim Ben Kargbo, at a one day evaluation workshop on Sierra Leone Environmental Social Management Framework (ESMF) study report at the Njala Avenue, Lumley Beach, Mr. Tamu emphasized the need for Sierra Leone to be further connected to the rest of the world.
He disclosed that Sierra Leone is a signatory to the ACE Consortium and that it was necessary for the country to be connected through a submarine cable route starting from Paris, France to the landing station at Lumley Beach.
Mr. Tamu told his audience that the landing of the fibre optic has been a success story, adding that in choosing the landing site, environmental consultants recommended that there was no serious environmental impact on people in the community.
Mr. Tamu assured the gathering that Sierra Leone stands to benefit immensely from the landing of the fibre optic cable.
The Acting Mayor of the Municipality of Freetown, Gibril Kanu, thanked the government for the progress made so far at the landing site, stating that Freetown will soon be linked to the rest of the country through internet connectivity.
In his statement on behalf of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Bishop Tamba Koroma noted that the level of collaboration between EPA and its stakeholders has been very high and that this has contributed to mitigate negative reports on the environment.
Workshop Chairman and Deputy Secretary in the Ministry of Information and Communications, Gilbert Heavens Cooper, catalogued the phases of the project, noting that the landing of the fibre optic cable is vital to the people of Sierra Leone.
Project Coordinator, West African Rural Communication Infrastructure Project (WARCIP) Julius Kamara, gave an objective of the Thirty- One Million US dollars project funded by the World Bank.
He said that the project will provide high international connectivity so as to mitigate the existing marginalization of Sierra Leone, pointing out that the Project will bridge the digital divide and reduce telecommunications cost and expedite ICT development in the country.
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