Australia bolsters border outposts with two-way radio


Radio Communications Team Leader Major Josh Fordham said: “When completed, this project will provide radio communications to all provinces in the Solomon Islands and allow for a more coordinated response in the event of a natural disaster or disaster. security incident.”

A group of 12 members of the Australian Defense Force (ADF) traveled to the Solomon Islands to advance work on the western and eastern border outposts and the Solomon Islands Police and Emergency Radio Network ( SIPERN).

The 12 staff consisted of two teams, one focused on radio communications and the other on infrastructure.

In March 2022, Australia and the Solomon Islands agreed to provide a national police and emergency radio network for the Solomon Islands. SIPERN will provide a reliable, resilient and ready radio communications network in Honiara and across the Solomon Islands linking the Royal Solomon Islands Police, the Ministry of Health and Medical Services and the National Disaster Management Office. The first phase of the project will be delivered to Honiara before the Pacific Games.

During their visit, the radio communication team traveled to Honiara, Taro, Kulatanai, Harapa, Mono, Gizo, Munda, Noro, Buala and Kirakira to better understand project locations, roles and capacities.

Radio Communications Team Leader Major Josh Fordham said: “When completed, this project will provide radio communications to all provinces in the Solomon Islands and allow for a more coordinated response in the event of a natural disaster or disaster. security incident.”

“We had the chance to travel to different parts of the country and it was very clear to us how dispersed the population is and how important this radio network will be for the people of the Solomon Islands,” Major Fordham said.

In October 2019 and March 2022, the prime ministers of Australia and the Solomon Islands agreed to build the western and eastern border outposts respectively.

Following delays due to COVID-19, the infrastructure team traveled to the Western Border Outpost site at Lofung South. Australia is accelerating this project and initial work is expected to begin later this year. After that, they traveled to Temotu, visiting Lata before traveling to Vanikoro. The team visited six potential sites for the eastern border outpost, assessing their technical suitability.

Infrastructure team leader Major Chris Zdjelar said: “We reviewed a range of sites on Vanikoro, including those that had been pre-selected by the Solomon Islands government in 2021.”

“To aid in our technical assessments, we spoke with communities to better understand the environments we were examining and the feasibility of building at each site, considering things like nearby logistics, amenities and access to the site,” Major Zdjelar said.

Both teams were accompanied by Solomon Islands government officials who facilitated positive community engagement with local stakeholders, including provincial government officials, church leaders, village chiefs and tribal elders. Key members of each team will return to Honiara in mid-July to update Solomon Islands government officials on the progress of the projects.

Source: press release

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