MTN calls for media support to fight cable theft

The telecoms giant said its efforts at improving network connectivity in the country is being derailed by cable theft

Telecommunications company, MTN has called for community protection and support in the fight against cable theft.

It said the continuous stealing of cables was disrupting network connectivity, thereby, affecting customer experience and causing huge financial burdens for the company.

MTN, as its medium of transport for backhauling services from cell sites to major switching centres, currently runs a bigger percentage of its backbone traffic on fibre optic cables.

The fibre optics enables MTN to provide greater Bandwidth for higher connectivity speed to accommodate the increasing traffic demand for digital services among others in the country.

But thieves, whose activities are partly responsible for the cuts, are making it difficult for MTN to provide and ensure excellent service delivery to its customers.

Speaking to Journalists and media practitioners at an Editor’ Forum in Bolgatanga, the company’s Northern Sector network manager, Joseph Addai, stated that MTN spends a lot of revenue to replace stolen cables, a situation which is drawing back the company in terms of its commitment to improving services.

He said aside from thefts, other factors that caused damage to MTN’s cables in the Upper East region include activities of private developers, road constructions, rainfalls and floods, and vandalism.

“We have issues of theft on our sites where we have thieves stealing our cables. When this happens, we suffer in terms of customer experiences. And in terms of finance, it means we need to go and get money which we didn’t plan for to make a replacement when these monies could have been used to do further upgrades to our systems”.  

Media support

Addai said MTN over the years has taken steps and maintained close collaborations with key stakeholders to address the issue of theft and damage to its fibre cables to guarantee good, quality and uninterrupted services to customers.

He, however, said much more needed to be done so that thefts and damage to the company cables are completely weeded out of their operations. To that effect, he urged the support of the media in educating communities to protect and report incidents of thefts and damage to cables to MTN for appropriate actions.

“We are bringing this up so that as journalists, you can help us create the awareness in the communities in terms of when they see some unscrupulous persons around our sites during unholy hours so that they draw our (MTN) for such people to be apprehended.” 

Leading digital solutions.

For his part, the chief sales and distribution officer, Shaibu Haruna touted MTN’s progress in the continent over the years, adding the company was investing hugely towards becoming a leader in digital solutions on African soil by 2025.

Haruna stated that MTN is on track to invest US$1 billion in infrastructure by 2025 and will focus on five growth platforms; such as Network, Digital and Enterprise services, Fintech solutions and Application Programming Interface (API) marketplace.

For customers, Haruna assured the best of connectivity that befits modern times to grow businesses and propel the progress of the African continent.

“We have achieved 99.3%, 97.8% and 90.7% coverage for 2G, 3G and 4G respectively. LTE population coverage has also moved from 71.72% to 90.7% and we have also connected rural technology sites. Every district in Ghana is covered with a 4G network. Internet connectivity has also increased significantly”.

Haruna, in this speech, thanked the media in the Upper East Region for its contribution to the growth of MTN, calling for the strengthening of the relationship. 

He urged the media to use its waves decisively to contribute to the development of the region.

The journalists put together from print, television, radio and online were given airtime to support them in the discharge of their duties.

Senyalah Castro

Asaase Radio 99.5 – tune in or log on to broadcasts online
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