Basil Thanks Prime Minister O’Neill for his Appointed Ministry

 

Approved for Release

October 18, 2017

Member for Bulolo Hon. Sam Basil today thanked Prime Minister, Hon. Peter O’Neill for appointing him as Minister for Communications, Information Technology and Energy.

“I look forward to serving the people of Papua New Guinea with the government of the day in line with the Alotau Accord II as well as existing PNG Vision 2050, PNG Sustainable Development Plan 2030 and the Medium Term Development Plan,” said Basil.

“I will issue official statements on the way forward in the ministry of communications, information technology and energy after being briefed by relevant government departments and agencies,” he said.

But as an overview, Mr Basil will be looking at responsible, affordable and accessible communications in radio, television and internet including concerted effort to address cyber crime. He also wants to see a sustainable energy policy and regulatory framework to power up industries, urban areas and more importantly rural Papua New Guinea.

“Energy is often the first utility requirement before water and telecommunications so we must get our Energy Policy right,” said Mr Basil.

Mr Basil wants accelerated thinking on energy policy and regulations with a view of establishing an energy policy and regulation authority focusing on energy generation, transmission and distribution making use of our natural resources and spreading the benefits of energy beyond urban areas and industries to all districts.

In Communications, the Minister intends to review the National Broadcasting Commission and provincial radio stations with a view to re-introduce shortwave and medium wave frequencies to improve radio access in remote rural areas as in the early 1980s.

Minister Basil also wants a review of NBC funding, revenue generation and financial management to see that cash flow and its implications on wages is addressed urgently.

The ministry is the first Cabinet portfolio allocated to Pangu Pati since the cross-over of 15 MPs to Government ranks. The package so far includes two vice ministries (education and fisheries); and a number of parliamentary committee chairs including chairman of the Public Accounts Committee.

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