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Safaricom suffers major outage

Kenya , 24 Apr 2017

Safaricom suffers major outage

Kenya's leading telecommunications company has suffered a major outage today affecting all its services including text messaging, data, voice and its mobile money system – M-Pesa .

Users took to social media to report their non-existence service from the giant telecom, others fearing that the outage would affect the relay of results in the coming general elections in August this year. Having the largest users in Kenya, the telecom company will be widely used to send results from polling stations in the general elections.

The company has since apologised for the downtime and said that they are hard at work to get their services back on.

"We have identified the root cause of the outage and are working to resolve this in the shortest time possible. In the meantime, Voice, Data, SMS, MPesa and Enterprise services will be available intermittently until the issue is fully resolved," Safaricom said in a statement today.

This development is a double blow to Kenyan internet users after the SEACOM cable affected most ISPs using the undersea cable to provide connectivity to their clients. In Kenya, 99 percent of internet users come from mobile subscribers. Safaricom dominates the mobile internet subscription at 67.5% according to the latest industry quarterly report by Communications Authority of Kenya.

In a recorded interview, Safaricom CEO Bob Collymore said, "Unfortunately at about 9.40am we lost connectivity into our core network as well as the redundant path... now this shouldn't happen, it is unusual that both the redundant and main path fails. The technical team kicked into place immediately, we brought the network up temporarily but then it went down again. It has since come up again and customers can use all of the services, although there is a little bit of a backup."

Collymore used the opportunity to apologise to customers for the service failure and assured them that while SMS' may have been sent more than once, they will only be charged once.

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