THE introduction of mobile phones is one of a number of changes the people Kikori in the Gulf province are about to experience.
Getting the mobile phone service to this remote part of PNG contributes to the growth to gross domestic production that mobile phone competition has brought, and expands the phone penetration rate, which was low prior to the introduction of mobile phone competition.
Bringing mobile phones to this remote part of Gulf province is one of a number of impact projects being planned by the Kikori Gas Pipeline Landowners Association.
Five projects worth K17.6 million are being planned by the KGPLA, projects which were approved by the National Government.
KGPLA president Mark Sarong said the association sees communication as a key component of the changes planned for the people there.
Mr Sarong talked to people about the projects whilst attending meetings with them about the licence-based benefits sharing agreement for Gulf province landowners.
“I am pleased to inform that KGPLA will commence impact projects immediately upon the completion of its current foundation stages,” Mr Sarong told a large gathering near the Kikori market.
The projects include housing estate worth K2 million, marine livelihood proect worth K3 million, Kikori-Kaiam road worth K12 million, study on hydro project worth K100,000, and another K500,000 for specialist advice and awareness campaigns and landowner participations.
Areas are being cleared for communications towers to be erected for the mobile phone network.
Mr Sarong told his people K8.6 million was released by the Government from the K17.6 million and K9 million was to be released soon.
He said KGPLA would establish its project office in Kikori next January to monitor and coordinate the projects.
“In early next year, KGPLA will also deliver to Kikori and Gulf province its five-year development plan, its newly designed Kikori township re-phasing plan and announce other projects.”
Whilst on his visits to the villages, Mr Sarong noticed that many of the gas pipeline route landowner heads were left behind in Kikori by Government officials and did not attend the LBBSA in Murray Barracks, Port Moresby.
Mr Sarong has informed the Department of Petroleum and Energy to take the necessary steps to address this.