Edgar Brandt Okahandja-The only way to unlock economic opportunities for development and sustainable reality is to ensure equitable access to network connectivity across the board. This was the message of Information and Communication Technology Minister Tjekero Tweya yesterday when he opened the Kaibasen site in Okahandja to serve the residents of the Oshetu 1, 2 and 3 informal settlements, as well as some parts of the Nau- Aib residential areas. “I dislike the situation where we have unequal network access within the borders of our beautiful motherland, as this demonstrates clearly discrimination towards the rights of our people to access communication, for they are unable to enjoy the same privileges others do, be it in rural or urban areas,” Tweya said. The Kaibasen site is a 25-metre lattice base transmitter station (BTS) which is 3G enabled. The upgrading of the site forms part of MTC’s 081EVERY1 Project, which is set to transform the national communications network grid in the country and through which MTC is set to build around 524 new sites that when completed will provide mobile telecommunication access to 100 percent of the Namibian population. Once the project is completed in 2019, rural areas which previously had only 2G networks access, will have access to 3G connectivity, thus increasing speed and convenience of communication and opening up endless possibility for innovation. “The 081EVERY1 Project is commendable and indeed needs to be praised, for the simple reason that it seeks to redress the long held untenable state of affairs, which have put especially our rural areas at a less advantageous position when it comes to access to quality networks, mobile connectivity, broadband accessibility and access to the information superhighway. “More so it makes a very bold statement, that of reaching 100 percent population coverage by the year 2019,” Tweya explained. It is predicted that by 2022 African mobile broadband connectivity will more than double from the 419 million in place today to 1,07 billion in 2022. This growth will be facilitated by the increasing availability of 3G and ‘4G’ LTE networks and the increasing decline in the retail price of smartphones, according to Global System for Mobile Communication - Association (GSM Association).
2017-11-28 09:30:30 9 months ago