Text messaging, new means to see voter details

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SIEC CEO Moses Saitala (left) with Our Telekom’s CEO Loyley Ngira exhibit the MOA after the signing ceremony.

A new SMS platform to connect people and intending candidates has been signed by the Solomon Islands Electoral Commission and Our Solomon Telecom Company.

The SMS (text) platform will connect people and intending candidates to seek information relating to constituency, polling station and registrations.

This is an additional social networking platform that was already in operation during the voters’ registration period.

Following the SMS platform it was created in a way where people can text using a code sent to 288 to see where their polling station is in their constituency and where they are registered.

According to SIEC and Our Telecom the SMS platform will be implemented early next year. But the text blast will continue until Election Day.

SIEC Chief Electoral Officer Mr Moses Saitala said the agreement has paved the way for Our Telecom to develop the platform known as SMS Text platform where people can be given the code 288 to send their text to.

He said anywhere in the country where there is Telecom coverage, people can use the code to find out or remind them on their registration centre, polling station, and constituency.

He said this is an additional service to the text blast that will be activated closer to the polling date.

“We need to get information to people, our country is so big and to have registration kits to reach people at the rural area we need good information to be transmitting,” he said.

He said, “This is where the significance of Telecom comes in.”

“So our requirement is basically for us to get our information to our rural people, knowing that telecom has a good coverage of more than 200,000 people.

“This agreement will articulate those kinds of services and it would be for the benefits of people.”

Our Telecom’s Chief Executive Officer Mr Loyley Ngira, “The beauty and advantage of the SMS is, it doesn’t matter what type of phone people use.”

“You can receive those SMS and able to send back messages required weather it’s 2G, 3G or 4G network.”

From Telecom’s perspective regarding the agreement Ngira said they are now working on a solutions to verify person registration by providing a code 288.

He reaffirmed that this code number will support people easily locate their constituency, polling station and names, he adds.

Two officers representation from the SIEC and Our Telecom were also signed as witnesses on Thursday.

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