Remote Kunar valley residents call for services, including cell phone towers

Residents of Mama Gul Valley – “Mama Gul Dara” – in Noorgul district in the eastern province of Kunar in Afghanistan have raised their voices over the absence of telecom network services in their area.

About 6,000 people live in the district and still turn to traditional letter writing to communicate.

In addition to not having cell phone access or the internet, residents in this remote part of the country also face numerous other challenges including the lack of functional health centers and schools.

“There is nothing here, we have already submitted applications [for services] we will do it again so that an antenna must be installed here and that we would be able to use telecommunication [services],” said Khan Mohammad, a resident of Mama Gul Dara.

The mountainous province of Kunar has long faced obstacles in establishing telecommunication activities due to its geographical isolation.

“People need to travel to the mountains to make a phone call to others, the service is very poor there as well,” said Mustaqim Khan, another resident of Mama Gul Dara.

People also urged the Taliban to establish proper health centers and schools for the people in these remote areas.

“There are 450 sites or antennae in this year’s plan across Afghanistan which includes Kunar, 20 antennae for Kunar would be implemented soon,” said Najibullah Haqqani, the Taliban’s acting telecommunication and technology minister.