Floods, insecurity slow USD1.3bn MTN project

TELECOMS

|
Image: Flooding in Kogi state. By Nigerian Government
Flooding in Kogi state

By Kokumo Goodie, Lagos, Nigeria

The massive network modernisation and swap-out exercise being implemented by MTN Nigeria, the country's largest mobile operator, as a part of its USD1.3bn 2012 total capital expenditure (capex), is being challenged by the flood disaster and the increasing wave of insecurity in some parts of the country.

Akinwale Goodluck, the telco's Corporate Services Executive, disclosed this during a media interaction in Lagos to update its subscribers on the ongoing project

Goodluck, who appealed for patience on the part of the over 44 million MTN subscribers and other stakeholders, who have been experiencing service hitches on the MTN network, said the various activities related to MTN network moderrnisation were progressing steadily.

"We regret, however, that the pace of work has been considerably challenged by the spate of insecurity coupled with the unprecedented flooding being experienced in many parts of the country," he said.

The network optimisation exercise will affect over 4, 000 base stations of over 10, 000 across the country.

According to Goodluck: "The task that we are undertaking is tantamount to building a new network. We are seeking to replicate what we achieved over a six period in nine months."

Goodluck explained that considerable progress has been recorded with regard to the ongoing network improvement plans, stressing that several swap-outs have reached very advanced stages of completion.

"The entire network modernisation process is a very logistic-intensive one and the problem of insincerity has seriously affected the pace of work in some parts of the country," he said.

Goodluck noted that in at least 13 states, flooding has created additional logistic impediments, resulting in the slowing down of the pace of the ongoing network modernisation efforts.

While acknowledging that MTN's customers had been experiencing some disruptions over the last few weeks, Goodluck said: "We sincerely express our thanks to our customers for their patience," pledging that as much as possible, MTN would stick to its original plan of carrying out the network procedures only at night, with a view to minimising disruptions to services.

He also assured that MTN was doing everything possible, including doubling its work teams, to finalise the project as quickly as possible, even as he pointed out that, because of the current challenges the exercise may have to conclude by first quarter of 2013.

The project, which began in July, 2012, was expected to cover the entire country and was originally expected to span a period of nine months.

"It is a massive investment we are making to boost not only the quality of telephone services, but also to enhance the back-end information and communication technology support which we provide for banking and financial services, the oil industry and several other industries across Nigeria," Goodluck said.



Share the News

Get Daily Newsletter

comments powered by Disqus

MORE TELECOMS NEWS

Employees voice concern over IPO

Daggers have been drawn between the Botswana Telecommunications Corporation Limited (BTCL) employees and the management over an alleged lack of consultation on the Initial Public Offer.  Read More

Local firms reap rewards of BOFINET tender

A multi-million dollar tender issued by Botswana Fibre Networks (BOFINET) will benefit a handful of local ICT and construction organisations.  Read More

Vodafone Ghana wins two CIMG awards

Vodafone Ghana has been adjudged the Telecommunications Company of the Year 2013, while its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) programme, HealthLine, picked the TV Programme of the Year 2013 award at the Chartered Institute of Marketing Ghana (CIMG) Awards held in Accra.   Read More

Gabon, World Bank sign US$58 million-fibre optic agreement

Gabon and the World Bank have signed a US$58 million agreement that will clear the way for the construction of a major fibre optic infrastructure to link the country’s five provinces and cross over to the Republic of Congo. Read More

Operators to suffer $14bn in lost revenues this year

A new report has found that voice and messaging traffic lost to OTT (Over The Top) players such as WhatsApp, Facebook and Skype will cost network operators $14 billion in revenues globally this year. Read More

Wiko‎ eyes 10% market share

New entrant to Nigeria’s mobile phone industry and French firm, Wiko Mobile, says it is targeting 10 per cent of Nigeria’s market. Read More

TeliaSonera International Carrier strengthens connectivity in Western Africa

TeliaSonera International Carrier (TSIC) and Angola Cables have announced an IP Transit agreement that will enhance regional connectivity to TSIC’s customer base along the West African coast using Angola Cables’ significant submarine cable assets. Read More

We’ve built West Africa's strongest aerial fibre, says Phase 3 chief

The Chief Executive Officer of Phase 3 Telecom, Mr. Stanley Jegede, says the firm has invested massively in building a very robust aerial fibre network to improve connectivity across the country and the entire West African sub-region. Read More

Orange launches reward scheme for corporate clients

Orange has introduced a loyalty programme for its corporate clients, dubbed Corporate Ziada. Read More

MTN Ghana launches fixed wireless phones for SMEs

MTN Ghana has launched the Eazifon fixed wireless phone as an alternative to the traditional landline fixed phone for Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs).  Read More

PRESS OFFICES

Sage ERP AfricaSAP AfricaSage Pastel AccountingTrust PayVMWareSamsung ElectronicsMitsumi DistributionPhoenix DistributionSage HR AfricaMTN BusinessSchneider ElectricMultichoice

FEATURED STORY

Growing African focus on data securityGrowing African focus on data security

Beachhead Solutions’ new SA and Mauritius country manager explains the challenges and solutions around securing customer data and compliance with new personal information legislation.

IN DEPTH

Africa lags on digital migration Africa lags on digital migration

Only three African countries have so far completed the digital migration process, and serious issues are hampering the migration in other nations.