BY ALFRED PAGEPITI
THOUSANDS witnessed the handover ceremony of Santupaele’s new school building in north Kolombangara Ward 26, Western province.
The handover and dedication of the building was held at Santupaele Village on Wednesday.
The building was dedicated by SDA pastor Kele Hana.
Cutting of ribbon was done by guest of honour former PM Gordon Darcy Lilo, RDP team leader John Paranga Labere, SDA education Director Machline Jilini and Western education authority officer Liliati Pitakaji.
Santupaele school building sub-project is proudly funded by the Rural Development Programme (RDP) with financial aid from SIG, European Union (EU), World Bank (WB), DFAD, administered by the Ministry of Development Planning and Aid Coordination (MDPAC), implemented under the auspices of the Western Provincial government.
Santupaele school building cost RDP $200,000 and it cost Santupaele Community contribution $390,000 worth of in-kind contributions totaling up the full project cost to $590,000.
RDP Western province team leader John Paranga Labere said Santupaele marks a milestone achievement in the development and this is not just an achievement that suddenly springs-up but track record of a journey in development for the community.
“You now own a good looking school building that will help to provide helpful leaning environment for your children, now and in future.
“This building is one of the 26 projects implemented under RDP since 2015, unfortunately one was terminated, so we left with 25.
“17 were completed by now including Santupaele, 8 are still ongoing, this means Santupaele community contributes more than RDP.”
He said since 2009, RDP implemented 101 projects in Western province. Unfortunately, 7 projects were terminated due to disputes and poor community efforts. This leaves with 94 projects in full implementation.
The ceremony was witnessed and attended by guest of honour, Gordon Darcy Lilo and community elders, men, women, youth and children of Santupaele, MPA for ward 26 North Kolombangara Michael Aquila, Western province education authority officer Liliata Pitakagi, SDA education authority Director Machline Jilini, community leaders and people of Ward 26.
Santupaele school building construction began on August 8, 2016.
The school will now accommodate more than 50 students, expecting to commence their academic next year.