Government of the Federated States of Micronesia

Pilot Telecenter Project Handed Over in Tonoas

Palikir, Pohnpei (FSM Information Services): December 4, 2009 - The Secretary of the Department of Transportation, Communication and Infrastructure, the Honorable Francis I. Itimai, staffed by Mr. Jolden J. Johnnyboy, Assistant Secretary for Communication Division along with technical staff, Mr. Mark DeOreo, Radio Spectrum Manager, travelled to Chuuk on November 26-29 to join the FSM President Manny Mori and the Secretary of the Department of Foreign Affairs, the Honorable Lorin Robert and officially inaugurate and turn over the Pilot Telecenter Project in Tonoas to the Chuuk State Government, Department of Education. The Pilot Project is situated at the Sino-Memorial Elementary School in Tonoas, Chuuk. The project was jointly implemented by the Department of TC&I, Communications Division and the Japanese Government through KDDI and NICT, through funds provided by APT and MIC.

The Inaugural and Turn Over Ceremony took place on the 27th of November, 2009 and was attended by t the President and his Delegation, the Chuuk State Governor and his Delegation, the Japan Delegation headed by Mr. Yasuhiro Koga, Director of Government and Industrial Affairs Department, KDDI, the Tonoas Municipal Government Officials and the Traditional Leadership. Also witnessing the ceremony was Dr. Kenji Saga, who was the advocator of the three telecenter projects in Micronesia. The other two Telecenter Projects are in Walung, Kosrae and Madolenhimw, Pohnpei.

In his keynote remark, President Mori recognized the State and Municipal Officials and the Traditional Leadership of Tonoas and thanked them for all the efforts in working with his Department of TC&I and the FSMTC to make this project a reality and stressed the importance of taking good care and good maintenance of all the equipment provided under this project. He recognized and thanked the Delegation from the Government of Japan and the University Professors for all the efforts as well in making the project happen and for coming a long way to the island of Tonoas to witness this monumental event for the people of the island.

President Mori articulated the fact that this project, and the other two projects in Kosrae and Pohnpei, are results of a joint effort of the two nations, Japan and FSM, and a first step to connect the schools and community from the rural locations to the modern world. He thanked the funding agencies for the project, namely the Asia-Pacific Telecommunity (APT), which FSM is a full member, and the Government of Japan, through the Ministry of Internal Affairs & Communications (MIC) for the extra budgetary contribution. He stressed that the primary objective of these projects is to serve as models for other rural schools and communities throughout Micronesia and for the entire Pacific and that these school-based telecenters can also be made available not only to the students but the whole community to connect them to the rest of the world.

Before he concluded his remarks, President Mori stated that this event in Tonoas is very important to witness the successful demonstration and know the concept for internet access for remote communities like Tonoas can work for many other similar communities in the FSM. In his concluding statement, he stated that there is no better reward than to see the appreciative faces of the school children as they embraced this new technology.

The Chuuk State Governor and the Tonoas Mayor in their remarks thanked President Mori and the National Government, specifically the Department of TC&I and their Japanese counterparts for this great achievement for the people and school children of Tonoas. They stated that this indeed demonstrated the concept of partnership between all levels of Government and its bilateral partners, the Government of Japan and the donor agencies.

Following the remarks of public officials and dignitaries, a public demonstration of the center's system was conducted at the school site. The public demo include: Video Teleconference (VTC) by President Mori and other officials with students at Waseda University; Sino Students with Waseda students; The Sino Elementary School children were connected to their student counterparts in Kosrae, Pohnpei and the Waseda University students in Japan as well as with the Deputy Chief of Mission, Mr. James Naich at the FSM Embassy in Washington, DC. The school children were allowed to video and audio conference with each other. President Mori, after the Ribbon Cutting Ceremony, opened the school computer laboratory and had the opportunity to access his email via the school network system and was successfully connected.

Before the National and State Delegations left Tonoas, the ceremony was concluded with a great buffet lunch provided by the people of Tonoas, along with dances and great singing performed by their youth groups.

The equipment for the Sino-Memorial Elementary School includes:

  • 18 Lap Tops (with networking accessories like web cameras, batteries, cables, etc)

  • 1 Over head Projector with Projector Screen

  • 1 Server (Located at Chuuk FSMTC)

  • 1 Multi-function Printer

  • 1 Digital Camera

  • 1 Generator

  • 9 Panels for the Solar System

For further information on this release, please contact:

FSM Office of the President
Public Information: Press, Radio, Video
P.O Box 34
Palikir Station, Pohnpei, FM 96941
Tel.: (691) 320-2548/2092
Fax.: (691) 320-4356