October 2, 2022

By Allieu Sahid Tunkara
Sierra Leone’s leading telecoms company, Orange SL has launched another programme of free on-line studies for pupils and students in secondary schools and tertiary institutions.
The free-on-line programme is expected to commence soon country-wide.
The free on-line studies means pupils and students can access teaching programmes and lectures on-line free of cost.
Under the free-on-line studies scheme, schools and colleges can also enjoy free browsing on several learning sites such as the Ministry of Basic and Senior School Education (MBSSE) Online Classroom, Wikipedia, Khan Academy Open2Study and many more.
Pupils and students can also visit http://www.orange.sl/personal/1/101/ orange-education-2986.html and other additional links without paying for the services.
The provision of the on-line services is made possible through the signing of a memorandum of understanding between Orange SL and the MBSSE to offer zero-rated education portals to schools and universities countrywide in the Corona Virus period.
Similarly, Orange SL has also established a healthy and direct relationship with the Ministry of Information and communication (MOIC) to intensify the fight against the Corona Virus spread.
Thus, the company in Collaboration with MOIC, is undertaking an intensive and robust sensitisation on the prevention of the Corona Virus.
In that direction, the company has zero-rated the following sites: MOIC, http://www.mic.gov.sl, World Health Organisation, https://www.who.int/ and the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention, https://www.cdc.gov/.
With the availability of these facilities, customers can get free access to accurate information on the precautionary measures against Corona Virus.
The sensitisation campaign is not only restricted to the nation’s capital of Freetown but also to remote communities in Sierra Leone.
The on-line service comes in the wake of government shutting down of schools and universities as measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
The signing ceremony also deepens an already existing relationship between Orange SL and government in this trying time the country faces.
Orange SL’s free on-line service is a show of solidarity with the government and also a way of strengthening education in the country throughout COVID-19 period.
“Orange SL stands in solidarity with the nation during this very difficult time and commits to support the government in the fight against this global pandemic,” an Orange SL news release reads in part.
At this critical moment, Orange SL remains committed to providing quality, efficient and viable telecommunications service to complement government effort in meeting the growing demand of its valued customers.
The company’s determination of ensuring their messages reach the most remote communities has compelled it to employ some measures to realise that objective.
Orange SL ensures that its digital platforms are updated on a daily basis with accurate tips daily, reminder SMS, at least, once a day to all are disseminated to all customers, short videos in local languages on Corona Virus precautionary measures are developed and circulated and a caller ring back tone in Krio aimed at educating customers about the virus is in full swing.
The company also does not lose sight of the importance of mobile financial services in this difficult moment.
“We encourage cashless transactions via Orange Money for the purpose of voice and data bundles as well as payment of utility bills as it not only guarantee ease of doing business but also ensures safety from the transmission of the virus through cash,” the document also reads.
Besides consolidating education in Sierra Leone, Orange SL is also supporting local communities through donation of personal protective equipment to health workers and other personnel in the Corona Virus fight to ensure their safety.
The support provided by the telecoms company in the fight against the virus is one of the many activities embarked upon by the agency since the outbreak of the Corona virus in the country.
Sometime in March this year, Orange SL donated assorted personal protective equipment to the people of Constituency 112 in the Western Area Rural District which hosts Orange SL headquarters.
In the same month, Orange SL also donated veronica buckets, hand sanitisers, soap, gloves and other protective gears to the people of constituency 128 in the west of the capital including Wilberforce, Tengbeh Town and Hill Station.
The company has also recently launched the WANPOT product for ease of communication across the country.
The WANPOT offer combines prepaid and post-paid features that give customers a monthly bundle of a fixed price with abundant data allowance.
In the midst of such donations, Orange SL has also ensured that its products and services including Sim cards, scratch cards, Orange Money services, voice and SMS among others are always available.
Apart from worthwhile contributions, Orange SL’s Office surfaces are also sanitised considering the highly contagious mode of the virus. Queues at Orange SL facilities are reduced to their barest minimum so that customers can access services in a hygienic condition.
Sierra Leone and other countries face constant threat of COVID-19 which has taken huge death toll.
The country’s neighbouring countries, Guinea and Liberia have recorded 250 and 50 cases respectively. Sierra Leone has recorded 10 cases and over 600 are in quarantine facilities.
Government is fighting hard to neutralise the spread of the virus.
Towards that direction, President Julius Maada Bio has called on Sierra Leoneans, corporate and business entities to join the national fight.
Orange SL is one those entities that have yielded to the call by way of Zero rating of communication services, provision of personal protective equipment and hand washing materials for health workers and community residents as well as awareness raising and the provision of accurate information on Corona Virus prevention in remote communities.
Besides, the company entreats the public to be cautious and adherent to government directives and health guidelines to prevent the further spread of the virus in Sierra Leone.
Considering that Orange SL cares, it has repeatedly called on Sierra Leoneans to call 117 if Corona Virus signs and symptoms are felt.
It is hoped that the lives of millions of Sierra Leoneans could be saved with the compliance of such messages.
Orange SL is poised to do more until COVID-19 is defeated so that life can return to normalcy.