GONG SHOW: “FOOD FOR THOUGHT”
Not that I think the public or media will ever get the full story of what’s going on with American Samoa TeleCommunications Authority (ASTCA): Where is it getting the money to pay for the Tui Cable connection? Where does it stand with its debt to ASH-Cable/ Bluesky Communications? Is it true that there is a problem with its connection to the O3b satellite, causing ASTCA’s Internet service to be slow as molasses? Has it paid out the millions it borrowed from the ASG Employees' Retirement Fund to the new Hawaiki Cable? How much does it still owe on this? And ASH-Cable, how much does it owe it?
And what about the following concerns? Have they been resolved?
WARNING AGAINST CHINESE COMPANY EQUIPMENT USED IN SAMOA
(Radio NZ ran this story on Nov. 28, 2016)
Director of Homeland Security Utualii Iuniasolua Savusa has advised the American Samoa Telecommunications Authority to be aware that Congress has banned telecommunications supplies from a Chinese company that Samoa may be using.
An ASTCA representative Malcolm Sword reported that one of their current projects is to establish a back-up link via Samoa for communications with the outside world. He said the phone links between Samoa and American Samoa have been on and off but ASTCA hopes to establish an improved dedicated link with Samoa soon.
But Utualii said Congress had banned the use of equipment from the company, which he did not name. He informed a cabinet meeting that the concern relates to switches that the company manufactures.
Samoa News notes that no update of this concern has been made public. So — with Tui Cable in the works — is the equipment from this Chinese company still being used in Samoa?
BLAST INTERNET PROGRAM
On Sept. 22, 2015, Samoa News ran a story about how Internet Funds to establish the multi million-dollar Broadband Linking the American Samoa Territory (BLAST) project must be used by Sept. 2015 or returned to the federal grantor.
The story includes the following paragraph of the BLAST project:
“Of note is that one of the contractual conditions of ASTCA’s BLAST project grant funding is that ASTCA must improve broadband capacity up to 3 times greater than it currently offers, at the same price it presently charges or charged on the ‘old’ system.”
Has this happened? Is it happening?
Just some food for thought … GONG!