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Safaricom invests billions in network upgrades

Safaricom Chief Executive Officer Peter Ndegwa
Safaricom Chief Executive Officer Peter Ndegwa

from MARIA MACHARIA in Nairobi, Kenya
NAIROBI – SAFARICOM, the Kenyan mobile network operator, has invested more than Ksh300 billion (US$2,83 billion) in infrastructure over the last ten years.

The company disclosed the figures while reporting an immense growth in internet data consumption as Kenyans adhere to the call by the government to stay at home as one of the measures to curb the spread of the deadly coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

Safaricom stated it had laid out more than 6 700 kilometeres of fibre reaching more than 300 000 homes.

Additionally, mobile internet is distributed through 5 300 base stations spread across the country delivering 3G and 4G mobile network to 87 percent of the population.

The rest of the population accesses the network on 2G, the company stated.

“The investment in improving, extending and modernizing the network over the years is paying off and we are able to carry the traffic and ensure that Kenyans remain connected through this period and beyond,” Peter Ndegwa, Chief Executive Officer of Safaricom, said.

He said the company had been able to deliver a quality experience on the fixed internet bandwidth in order to facilitate individuals to work from home.

“Learners are also enjoying free access to educational content on mobile internet whereas university students get concessional rates to facilitate continuous virtual learning in collaboration with learning institutions.”

Safaricom meanwhile disclosed consumption had grown by 70 percent during restrictions against COVID-19.

Mobile data usage has also risen by 35 percent as customers tap into the internet to work and study from home as well access social media and entertainment sites.

Kenya has confirmed 265 cases of the virus and nine deaths.

– CAJ News

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