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Telstra For Sale -

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Hello and welcome to

Stateline. I'm Philip Williams

nd I'll be your host while

Kathleen Hyland is away on

maternity leave. I'm really looking forward to spending

time with you over the next few

months. Later in the program

we'll be sharing the sweet

sounds of the Soweto gospel

choir. First Telstra - the sale

is on although delayed until

the share price is improved.

Despite the deal with the Nationals regional Australians

still have concerns about the

future and quality of their

services. The Liberal's Gary

Nairn thinks the decision to

sell is the right one so much

so that no matter what his

electorate might be thinking he

won't be crossing the the

floor. The ALP's Kate Lundy

says the sale is wrong and

hands. Telstra should stay in public

Consumers close to Canberra as

Wamboin just want anybody to

shine a little light on

Telstra's black holes.

Lexie Wise loves her farm,

family and her horses. Make a

phone call, yes, you might be

just as good as me, no phone

reception. The charm of country

life evaporates with the

mention of the world Telstra.

It's a mobile phone It's a mobile phone too far

just 15 kilometres by Crow from

the national capital.

If you're going to riding

which there's an element of dangerouser in that what do you

do? I have to ring my husband

before I leave so he knows how

long I'm heading out. I tell

him how long I'll be. If I

don't ring when I come back he

knows to send out a search

parliamentary. You can't rely

on your mobile? No, I

can't. Lexie Wise lives on the

Wamboin estate has lousy mobile

service why will she be any

better off with a privatised

Telstra? Mobile services are

substance theyly better today

than they were 9.5 years ago

throughout my lek trat. Given

the geography there is gaps and

we're filling those gaps very

quickly. The gap in Wamboin

will be filled very soon both

from a mobile phone point of

view and a broadband and we

already have competitive

broadband happening in that

region as well. Those sort of

things just wouldn't happen

under a totally

Government-owned

telecommunications

situation. That is in a sense

sounds like a argument for

keeping it. You are saying

there is success now under the

current arrangements. But there

can be even more success. Gary

Nairn can say all he likes

about patching up the holes but

he has relied on having Telstra

coming before Parliament so we

can hold them accountable. I

say get out and talk to your

constituency and stay in touch

with them. We know and I know

and Gary Nairn knows he'll keep

getting those calls of

complaints, Telstra will keep

making promises and promised

the world as the Coalition

Government has for nine long

years that they won't actually

deliver an outcome that fixes

everybody's problems to run a

small business from home or

educate themselveses from the

bush at a university in a

regional area. Those things

won't happen.

For the moment, though, for

Lexie Wise, the steps to better

communications take on a rather

more literal meaning. This is

how she and Telstra establish a

connection her home but only on

a good day. Have you to God

anything? One bar which

usually isn't enough. Now it's

just going up. I could possibly

make a phone call now. With

your hand up like this? Yes

and hopefully not falling off

the ladder. The absurdity of

this mobile callisthenics is

compounded in a cold Canberra

winter. I've had to come out

here in the rain and the wind.

I've had my house phone out of

order which is why I come out

here and do this. Telstra say

can I have a mobile number to

contact you on and I say I

can't stand out here all day

waiting for them to ring. Good

for your muscles. I would

rather do something else than

stand here to get good phone reception.

One of the reasons that the

telecommunications and Telstra

are failing now is because

they've been completely

compromised working hand in

hand with the Coalition

Government to keep their share

price high. That means they

haven't been making the capital

investments. That means they

haven't been providing the

maintenance people in regional

areas to fix the phone lines

Wick quickly enough. That's

rubbish. She probably hasn't

been outside Canberra very

often. I drive 60,000

kilometres a year and I've been

driving those 60,000 kilometres

a year every year around my

electorate and nobody knows

better than I what's happened

with respect to

telecommunications around my

electorate and it has imfrom

proved out of sight.

Lexie Wise does a bit of

driving too. It's the only way

she can find a reliable

connection from one of the

hills near other Herr Wamboin

home. Me, just letting you know

I'm on the way. Local member

Gary Nairn says services in the

bush have improved enormously

in his electorate and will be

even better once Telstra has

been sold what do you think? If

that was the case I would love

to believe it. I don't know

services have improved that

much as far as your mobile

coverage is concerned. If

Telstra were taken over and

things improved fantastic, but

who's to say that is going to

happen. The mobile telephone

you are calling is switched off

or not in a mobile service

area, please try again later.

The people who risk their

lives to save their Jewish neighbours from the Holocaust