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National optic fibre project ready December

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The Electricity Supply Corporation of Malawi (Escom) says it expects the implementation of the National Optic Fibre Project to be completed this coming December.

Initially, the project which seeks to connect all districts to Capital Hill was supposed to be completed in December 2018.

But briefing reporters in Blantyre on Wednesday, Head of Optic Fibre Communication at Escom, Chester Kabinda, said they have been given an assurance by the contractor, Huawei, that the task of laying out the fibre will be done in six months from the initial 18 months.

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Kabinda said Huawei has sub-contracted four companies which will see 300 jobs being created between now and December 2017.

He added that the first phase of the project will see contractors laying an optic fibre between Mapanga and Chiradzulu as well as Zomba and Liwonde.

The fibre will be mounted on Escom poles which, according to Kabinda, will help provide security to the infrastructure.

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“Because the fibre will be carried on Escom poles, it will necessitate that we switch off power when laying the fibre, so we would like to ask Malawians to bear with us.

“Power will only be switched off in the area that we are working,” Kabinda said.

Speaking when he launched the $23 million project in April, President Peter Mutharika described the initiative as a timely solution in cleaning up the civil service which, he said, has for some time been a home of ghost workers.

He said the project will, among others, connect the country’s human resource systems which will keep up to date data for genuine government employees.

“Malawi will have improved delivery of services as various government offices will now be connected to an information super highway. With the fibre backbone project, we expect transformation in sectors such as national identity programme, education, health and the finance,” he said.

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