KUCHING, Nov 25 — The plight of school children at Nanga Sumpa as highlighted by The Borneo Post recently has prompted the Sarawak Multimedia Authority (SMA) to rollout satellite broadband internet connectivity solutions in the area.
Using a Very Small Aperture Terminal (VSAT) station, the agency said internet connectivity was enabled by telecommunications service provider, Reach 10, to school children at Nanga Sumpa to enable them to resume their online education and for the villagers to stay connected with the outside world.
“We realise that we have the capability to quickly resolve the connectivity issue for these children and we are thrilled to be able to make a difference to them and the villagers there”, enthused Reach 10 chief executive officer Leo Chin in a statement.
This positive development came about after the plight of a teacher leading 22 students from Nanga Sumpa and Nanga Jambu in Lubok Antu on a two-and-a-half hour trek through dense jungles was highlighted in a recent news report.
A secondary teacher from SMK Lubok Antu, Sambau Dugat, told The Borneo Post that he decided to organise the jungle trekking trip after seeing students from his village making the journey on their own to obtain internet coverage for their studies.
The agency stated that Nanga Sumpa has long been Sarawak’s premier eco-tourism destination, well-known for its community tourism initiative, pristine landscape and wild orang-utan spotting experience.
It is a one and half hour longboat ride from the Batang Ai Lake with no road access.
“Nevertheless, we are aware of the fact that there are many areas in Sarawak especially in the rural areas that have not received comprehensive and stable communication coverage due to geographical and technical challenges”, said SMA general manager Dr Zaidi Razak.
Dr Zaidi said SMA would strive to roll out the SMA Linking Urban, Rural and Nation (Saluran) 200 project to target villages such as Nanga Jambu by February next year as part of its corporate social responsibility initiative.
Reach 10 is licensed under the Communications and Multimedia Act 1998 as a Network Service Provider, Network Facilities Provider and Application Service Provider to offer a full suite of connectivity solutions that include bandwidth, VSAT services, private lines, dedicated internet, international connectivity and data centre solutions to telco operators and enterprises in Malaysia. — Borneo Post