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General News of Tuesday, 24 February 2004

Source: GNA

Old telephone lines to be replaced- Kan-Dapaah

Accra, Feb 24, GNA- Plans are far advanced to replace old telephone facilities that link Kete Krachi with a new Synchronous Digital Hierarchy (SDH) to link Ho through Nkwanta to Tamale (the Northern Volta link).

The project is expected to facilitate the deployment of fixed network services to Nkwanta and other towns along the Northern Volta link, which would be completed by October this year while GSM services for Nkwanta would be deployed within the same period.

Mr. Albert Kan-Dapaah told parliament on Tuesday when answering questions from Mr. Gershon Gbediame, NDC Nkwanta, as to when telephone facilities would be extended to Nkwanta District.

Mr. Kan-Dapaah said a minimum of four hundred thousand (400,000) fixed telephone lines would be extended to every town with a Senior Secondary School (SSS), Teacher Training College or the University. He was answering another question by Mrs Agnes Sonful, NPP-Amenfi-West on behalf of Mrs. Gifty Eugenia Kusi, NPP Tarkwa Nsuaem as to when Simpa, Nsuaem, Dompim, Bonsa, Benso and Agono all in the Wassa West District would have telephone facilities.

The Minister said a rollout expansion programme to facilitate the extension of telephone services to the Wassa West district and its environs by 2005.

He said in the interim, commercial power and standby diesel engine generator installations would commence by the end of February this year. Mr. Stephen Amoanor Kwao, NDC Upper Manya Krobo, wanted to know what measures the Ministry has taken to complete the telecommunication facility under construction at Odumase Krobo.

Mr. Kan-Dapaah said an exchange building has already been constructed at Odumase Krobo and about 90 per cent civil works for the Customer Access Network (CAN) had been carried out.

He stressed that switching equipment for the exchange has been ordered under a 150-million dollar Alcatel funding facility. He said Ghana Telecom (GT) has signed an agreement with a vendor to complete the CAN.

He emphasised that a GSM services to the Upper Manya Krobo district, which cover a radius of approximately 25km, would be completed by July and a fixed network service to the area by August this year.