Throughout human history, all human activities – social, economic, political – depended upon and were achieved, successfully, through efficient, effective communication. Now, with 21st century, phenomenal, population growth and urbanization, fast travel and people movements; local, national and international interactions; and changed/changing socio-cultural and economic lifestyles, there had been and is a much more efficient/effective mode of communication than before, made possible and available by scientific, technological innovations – the improvement of Landline, Telephone Communication. There is an absolute need for Liberia to restore an efficient/effective communication – the Landline Telephone Service.
The US Central Intelligence Agency reported in 2003 that there were, approximately, 1.263 billion Landline telephone lines worldwide, with the People’s Republic of China leading with 350 million, the USA with 268 million and the UK at 23.7 million residential landlines. In 2008, worldwide telephone landlines increased to 1.27 billion from 1.263 billion.
Landline Telephone Service with Subscriber Directory
Before the civil conflict, Liberia enjoyed a comfortable, developing landline telephone service, with limited coverage of the rural counties. Landline telephone service provides safety, security and socio-economic well-being for all citizens, particularly, the average, ordinary citizens. For examples, landline telephone service will provide a listing of all offices of government and others:
- Offices of the President
- Offices of the Vice President
- Offices of the Judiciary
- Offices of Legislature
- Offices of Ministries & Agencies of government
- Offices of all state-owned Enterprises
- Offices of all Superintendents & other officials of the counties
- The Police, NSA, Bureau of Immigration
- Business Houses & Organizations
- Doctors, Hospitals, Clinics & Pharmacies
- Diplomatic, Foreign Missions
- Individual subscribers, A-Z,
All telephone Service is a necessary, regulated public Service, but Landline, Telephone Service, with a directory for the information of the public is, indeed, a much more required, regulated public service for the following reasons:
- It is relatively low-cost, within the reach of the average, low-income, Liberian wage-earner.
- Rather than a telephone (with a separate number) for each member of a large family, one may place a telephone in the room of each family member on a single telephone line (number) into the family home.
- For important, critical government services, the addresses and telephone numbers of all government ministries and agencies – local and national – with information on international, direct dialing are listed in the white pages of a telephone directory published by the service provider.
- Similarly, the addresses and telephone numbers of all private businesses are, also, listed in the yellow pages of the telephone directory published by the service provider.
- Individual landline subscribers who stand in need of urgent, medical service can find the addresses and telephone numbers of the clinics, hospitals, etc. in the telephone directory. The caller can be identified through his/her landline call.
It is very important to note that information – electronic or otherwise, such as the mail – facilitates or moves business; business facilitates or moves the economy; and the economy sustains the society, the people. In this connection, it is very important, also, to remind ourselves that we have been around for more than a century and a half, and that it is about time that we establish street addresses and mail delivery system with post offices, nationwide. This is doable.
For example, while we are very proud of and commend the Honorable, Mohamed Konneh, our Minister of Finance & Economic Planning, for the coveted recognition/award of “African Finance Minister of the Year”, we do not, even, know Hon. Konneh’s cell telephone, unpublished number to congratulate him, neither can we mail him our congratulations. Driving to the Ministry of Finance, downtown Monrovia, is another nightmare!!
We may mail a letter (only) at the Monrovia Post Office to any destination worldwide and it will be delivered; we may, also, mail a letter from the Monrovia post office to suburban Paynesville, but that letter will not be delivered, due to planning and implementing deficiency.
The resolution of this problem is a planning and economic development responsibility.