Australia donates new genset for SIBC

Australia donates new genset for SIBC


By Fredrick Kusu

The Australian government donated a new standby generator to the Solomon Islands Broadcasting Corporation (SIBC) today.

The standby generator costs around SBD 177, 300. The total amount including installation and other related costs is around SBD 208, 810.

The generator will serve as an alternative power source for SIBC’s FM transmitter located at the upper Rove, Honiara.

This will now put to end similar situations like in the past where SIBC lost its listeners during power outages.

For now the FM transmitter will remain operational and listeners will remain engaged despite a power outage.

Speaking during the handing over, SIBC Chief Executive Officer Johnson Honimae said the standby generator will ensure the FM transmitter remains operational when there is a power outage in the city.

SIBC Chief Executive Officer Johnson Honimae delivering his speech during the handing over ceremony

All of our major equipment centers need standby generators because of the power outages we sometimes experience here in the capital Honiara. The power outages result in power rationing affecting a lot of businesses… also includes SIBC. We lose listeners when the power goes off. Our digital equipment is affected when they experience power outages”.

“So, the decision by the Government of Australia to fund this standby generator at the FM transmitter will ensure our FM listeners have continuity when the city experiences power cuts.”

“ I am always telling our donors that when they are assisting SIBC with whatever project, they are assisting the whole country as SIBC serves the whole of Solomon Islands and not any one community.”

Mr Honimae said this will become more important as the country is preparing for the joint election on 17 April.

He said the support will ensure information about elections, campaigns and individual candidates will reach voters through the country without disruptions.

The Chief Executive Officer thanked the Australian government through the Australian High Commission in Honiara for the timely gift.

Speaking on behalf of the Australian government, Political Counsellor at the Australian High Commission in Honiara Cameron Darrah said Australia has invested in SIBC as the national broadcaster serving people in the country.

Political Counsellor at the Australian High Commission in Honiara Cameron Darrah delivering his speech during the handing over ceremony

He said Australia’s relationship with the media and SIBC is based on mutual respect and professionalism.

“People from all over the provinces listen to SIBC for information, education and entertainment. It is a big achievement for Solomon Islanders and Australia that SIBC remains on air’’.

“ The genset will keep SIBC on air to provide important information during times of natural disasters, power outage and elections,” Mr Darrah said.

A group photo of the handing over ceremony

SIBC and the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) last year.

Under this MoU, SIBC has benefitted through the supply of equipment that has boosted the Gizo FM transmitter in the provincial capital of Western Province expanding the coverage area.  

The ABC International Development Unit (ABC ID) which is the international development branch of the ABC also supports SIBC and other media organizations with capacity building of journalists and content makers to ensure businesses, governments and other institutions in the Pacific are accountable.


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