A week after Typhoon Tisoy (I.N. Kammuri) ravaged parts of the Bicol and Western Visayas Regions, the Department of Information and Communications Technology – Special Wi-Fi Action Team (DICT-SWAT) and the Télécoms Sans Frontières (TSF) continue to work together to bring emergency telecommunications (ETC) to Marinduque.
On 11 December, at around 1600H, the team boarded a roll-on/roll-off (RoRo) ship at the Dalahican Port in Lucena, Quezon. With them were three sets of Broadband Global Area Network (BGAN) and a Very Small Aperture Terminal (VSAT). They then arrived at the Port of Balanacan in Mogpog at around 1900H.
The following day, the team was quick to head to its first stop, the Municipality of Santa Cruz. There, the team performed assessments on the Internet connectivity and learned that the DICT’s Free Wi-Fi for All sites were operational.
With this, the team proceeded to its next stop, the Municipality of Torrijos. This municipality was the hardest-hit in Marinduque and, as such, needed ETC the most. Upon meeting with the Municipal Mayor Lorna Q. Velasco, it was learned that there were still problems with Internet connectivity in the area.
To help with this, the DICT-SWAT and TSF installed the BGAN at the Municipal Hall where staff from the Mayor’s office were able to make use of the connectivity. The team also provided technical assistance on its usage.