WACS launches in Botswana

TELECOMS

|
Image: Paul Taylor. By BiztechAfrica
Paul Taylor

By John Churu, Gaborone, Botswana

The West African Cable System (WACS) has been finally launched in Botswana. The Botswana 2012 ICT Pitso would have been incomplete without this very important pronouncement which, not surprisingly, had attracted a full house. In today’s global village, high speed reliable internet connectivity is a prerequisite for any country to have any meaningful competitive edge.

The BTC Group CEO, Paul Taylor, who gave a detailed synopsis of the WACS journey, said: “The government of Botswana through BTC invested USD37.5 million in the USD650 million undersea submarine communication cable linking Africa and the UK along the West Coast of Africa, an investment made jointly with the Government of Namibia who also contributed USD37.5 million.”

Both Botswana and Namibia own approximately 9.2% of the entire project, which according to Taylor; will be operated on an open access basis with other stakeholders. It is envisaged that WACS, which was successfully landed at Swakopmund, Namibia on February 8, 2011 is geared towards changing the lives of the peoples of the two nations and also the other part as well.

“It will enhance Botswana’s international connectivity by providing the nation with high quality and reliable internet and telephony services,’ explained Taylor. This undersea cable system carries data, voice and video faster and cheaper thereby providing users with enhanced direct international submarine cable connectivity.

Botswana and Namibia signed a cooperative agreement on May 14 2009, governing their joint investment and participation in the WACS project to deliver the vision of enhancing high speed, lower cost connectivity to the world to enable economic growth and diversification, thereby creating a platform for increased prosperity for citizens.

This development of the WACS began in 2009, the cable covers a distance of 14 000 kilometres, with 15 established landing Stations along the route. It will function to reduce the cost to connect the West Coast of Africa into the high-speed global Telecommunications network for many years to come according to ICT pundits.

This cable which is designed to support present and future internet, e-commerce, data, video and voice services was officially inaugurated on June 26 in Swakopmund by the Pesidents of the two countries.

Through Telcom, Namibia will operate and maintain the cable landing station, BTC and other stakeholders will have access to the facility and be able to ‘co-locate’ their services within the station. “Earlier this year we signed agreements which will enable BTC to use Telcom Namibia’s network to access BTC’s capacity at Swakopmund landing station,” elaborated Taylor.

In addition, Taylor said “Taking cognizance of the fact that WACS will be operational for the next 25 years, BTC has invested about $12 million in expanding its Trans-Kalahari fibre national backbone network through a new transmission platform called Dense Wavelength Division Multiplex (DWDM) providing a major path between Botswana and Namibia.”

In order to provide resilience such that the network is always available to the customers, BTC will ultimately be connecting to Namibia through two different routes namely the Mamuno/ Buitepos border post to form a ring network. “This will provide the required resiliency and availability of service in case of failures in one route."     



Share the News

Get Daily Newsletter

comments powered by Disqus

MORE TELECOMS NEWS

Yes, Etisalat dragged us to court, says MTN

MTN Nigeria has confirmed that it has been served with court papers based on a lawsuit filed by Emerging Markets Telecommunications Services Limited (Etisalat Nigeria) over the acquisition of Visafone, the only surviving code division multiple access (CDMA) operator in the country. Read More

Etisalat challenges MTN spectrum use

Etisalat Nigeria says it has brought a legal action challenging MTN’s use of the 800MHZ spectrum following the acquisition of Visafone. Read More

NewTelco SA extends African footprint with dedicated Kenyan presence

The Jasco Group has expanded the presence of NewTelco South Africa, a joint venture between the Jasco Group and NewTelco GMBH, into the East African region with a dedicated presence in Kenya.  Read More

Facility closure to affect Ondo services, warns MTN

MTN Nigeria has warned that the closure of its facilities in Ondo by the state government will negatively impact the quality of service in the state. Read More

Telcos threaten service blackout on states shutting BTS

Nigeria’s telecoms operators have threatened not to reopen any base transmission station (BTS) that were forcefully shut down by states. Read More

Neglect of CDMA a mistake, says NCC CEO

The Nigeria Communications Commission (NCC) has lamented the comatose state of the CDMA sector of the telecoms industry. Read More

Airtel introduces new UnlimiNet 20 daily bundle

Airtel has introduced a new “UnlimiNet 20 bundle”, billed as the most affordable bundled offer for voice, SMS and data on the Airtel network.      Read More

Safaricom opens new Narok retail shop

Safaricom has set its sights on Narok County as it seeks to provide residents of the rapidly growing town with easier access to its wide range of products and services. Read More

Why we launched Mate 8, M2 Tablet: Huawei

Chinese original equipment manufacturer Huawei has said it launched its two new flagship products, Mate 8 and M2 Tablet, to cater for the increasing mobile needs of consumers. Read More

BTCL introduces IPO Champions

The BTCL IPO Project Team has introduced BTCL IPO Champions across all BTCL and Barclays Bank branches across Botswana. Read More

PRESS OFFICES

Sage EnterpriseSAP AfricaSage Pastel AccountingTrust PayVMWareSamsung ElectronicsMitsumi DistributionPhoenix DistributionMTN BusinessSchneider ElectricMultichoiceMicrosoft 4AfrikaNetworks Unlimited

FEATURED STORY

Viber Spreads Good Vibes in Africa with the introduction of public chats Viber Spreads Good Vibes in Africa with the introduction of public chats

Viber, one of the leading messaging and calling apps with more than 664 million unique users worldwide, has opened its latest social channel ‘Public Chats’ to partners in Africa and the Middle East. 

IN DEPTH

Poised for greater heights – Roshi Motman, AfricaCom CEO of the Year WinnerPoised for greater heights – Roshi Motman, AfricaCom CEO of the Year Winner

Roshi Motman is not your average CEO. Since taking up the reins as the first female CEO of Tigo Ghana in 2014, she has led the Tigo brand through a remarkable transformation. 

COMPANY NEWS

Arbor Networks maintains leadership in IHS Infonetics Report on DDoS prevention appliances

Arbor Networks was identified once again as the top supplier of DDoS mitigation appliances overall, as well as in the Carrier, Enterprise and Mobile market segments, according ...