14 Mar 2011

American Samoa senator calls for cable review

1:18 pm on 14 March 2011

An American Samoa senator, Mauga Asuega, has called for a thorough review of the territorial government's nine million US dollar investment in the undersea fiber optic cable.

The system is managed and operated by American Samoa Hawai'i Cable or ASH-Cable, whose president Adolfo Montenegro is also president of Blue Sky Communications - owned by Florida-based eLandia international, which is the majority owner of ASH-Cable.

Mauga says the government is faced with a financial crisis and there is a need to question the operator and Blue Sky over how much money has been collected by the government on this venture.

The Senate President, Gaoteote Tofau Palaie, supported the hearing, saying the reason the Fono supported the project was to create jobs in the territory as well as to assist with economic development.

The government said the fiber optic cable project would improve telecommunications and help with the establishment of call centers, which has yet to happen.