WACS launches in Botswana
TELECOMS| Sept. 12, 2012, 11:09 a.m.
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."
MORE TELECOMS NEWS
Tigo Business – Building trusted business partner relationships with clientsTigo Business has increased and empowered its account management team to improve its overall customer service experience. Read More
Danbatta seeks Reps’ cooperation on telecom regulationsThe Executive Vice Chairman of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Prof. Umar Garba Danbatta, has called for more cooperation and understanding of members of the House of Representatives, on regulatory functions of the commission. Read More
Orange completes acquisition of Airtel in Burkina FasoOrange has announced that, together with its subsidiary Orange Côte d’Ivoire, it has completed the acquisition of 100% of the mobile operator Airtel in Burkina Faso. Read More
MTN Ghana goes live with 4G LTE in grand styleThe plush iconic MTN House, home to MTN Ghana’s operations came to a standstill on Tuesday, as the country’s telecom leader officially unveiled its latest 4G LTE services across the length and breadth of Ghana. Read More
NCC to end telcos’ voluntary adherence to corporate governanceAfter more than one year of voluntary adherence by telcos to the Corporate Governance Code for the industry, the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) yesterday started a journey that will lead to mandatory enforcement. Read More
Telkom Kenya appoints new CEOTelkom Kenya has announced the appointment of Aldo Mareuse as the Chief Executive Officer and member of the Board of Directors. Read More
N1.04tr NCC fine: MTN agrees on N330b staggered paymentMTN Nigeria and the Nigeria Communications Commission have reached an amicable settlement in the matter of the N1.04trillion fine imposed by the regulator in October last year. Read More
MTN Nigerian fine payment terms resolvedMTN has announced that the matter of its fine has been resolved with the Federal Government of Nigeria. Read More
NCC to review 2.6GHz spectrum auctionThe Executive Vice Chairman of the NCC, Prof Umar Garba Danbatta, says the Commission will soon meet with operators over the recent auction of 2.6GHz spectrum. Read More
Vodafone Ghana committed to use technology to address critical health issuesThe new Chief Executive Officer of Vodafone Ghana, Yolanda Cuba, has reiterated Vodafone Ghana’s commitment to using technology to address critical health issues such as maternal and infant mortality in the country. Read More
FEATURED STORYGovernment should encourage youths in ICT early
Youths should be given more encouragement to develop their ICT skills, an 11-year-old app developer told Kokumo Goodie.
BEST READ NEWS
IN DEPTHIBM Opens First Cloud Data Centre in South Africa
IBM is opening a new IBM Cloud Data Centre in Johannesburg, South Africa. The new cloud center is the result of a close collaboration with Gijima and Vodacom and is designed to support cloud adoption and customer demand across the continent.
COMPANY NEWSTigo, JI and GES equip teachers on child online protection initiative
Tigo, in partnership with J Initiative (JI), a youth focused non-governmental organisation in Ghana, have committed to protecting children online through policy advocacy, awareness creation, public education ...Ericsson and King’s College London demonstrate 5G tactile robotic surgery
Ericsson and King’s College London will be demonstrating a 5G use case of tactile robotic surgery at 5G World 2016 in London on 29-30 June.