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MTN earmarks R350m for SA network upgrade

By , ITWeb
South Africa , 23 Jul 2021

MTN has announced its intention to invest R350-million into its network in South Africa, specifically within the provinces of Limpopo, Mpumalanga and North West.

According to the operator, the intention is to modernise, upgrade, build new sites and transmission links.

“We want to bridge the digital divide and create exciting opportunities for communities, businesses and individual users. Our investment is therefore far more than achieving market share growth in the region – it is about bringing the benefits of the digital world to more people through a stable, secure and innovative network experience,” says Kagiso Moncho, MTN General Manager for Northern Region.

“We are already seeing active data users and traffic increase as more consumers seek affordable, innovative and reliable digital services and solutions. The key for us is to deliver network excellence and an enterprise turnaround. This will be underpinned by modernisation and rollout of 5G, together with price competitiveness,” says Moncho.

Maintaining network quality remains the key objective despite challenges, like battery theft.

The operator says it is making progress with its 5G tech rollout strategy and activated this technology in greater Polokwane and Witbank, with the intention to expand coverage into areas such as Nelspruit and Middelburg. Added to this is that 93% of towers in the Northern Region have LTE.”

“We are committed to ensuring our network coverage and quality is maintained and expanded so our customers stay connected. This is even more critical in the face of the pandemic and subsequent lockdown, connectivity is essential for medical emergencies as well as for learners and individuals working from home,” says Moncho.

While battery theft and vandalism remain a challenge, MTN has earmarked part of the investment for battery replacement and security programmes in the Northern Region.

“Vandalism of the network infrastructure remains a pain point and hinders the great progress we have made in stabilising and improving network availability. These vandalism incidents affect the economy negatively and the interruptions due to network outages hinder emergency and security services. Unfortunately, Limpopo province is one of the hotspots.

“We plead with the members of the community to report any vandalism incidents that they might witness to the nearest SAPS branches” says Moncho. 

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