Rwanda: 'Yellow World' Hits 1 Million Subscribers

The New Times (Kigali)

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Kezio-Musoke David And Kabona Esiara

Aphrodise Sebahinde bought his MTN line from Kabarondo on the 21st of October just after the mobile telecom company had newly constructed a mast in Rukara.

Over 80 percent of the country has access to mobile phone and Internet services enabled by over 200 masts located across the country.

MTN Rwanda on Monday afternoon announced the registration of its one millionth mobile subscriber.

At an unveiling ceremony of Aphrodise Sebahinde the one millionth subscriber, MTN Rwanda's Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Themba Khumalo said the company's mobile and Internet services can now be accessed by 80 percent of the country.

Khumalo said that the achievement comes after the company installed 200 masts across the country. He added that reducing call tariff rates had also attracted more Rwandans to subscribe to the MTN network.

Local calls were in the recent past reduced by 35 percent while international calls reduced by 60 percent respectively.

According to a statement issued by MTN in the past 10 years MTN Rwanda has invested over 80b Rwf to build and upgrade infrastructure in Rwanda.

Sebahinde a famer hailing from Kayonza District purchased his SIM card from Kabarondo on the 21st of October just after MTN had newly constructed a mast in Rukara.

In recognition of this historic and significant milestone, MTN rewarded Sebahinde who is a farmer with one exotic cow, a grass cutting machine and pumping spray machine to boost his farm.

In addition Mr. Sebahinde who has 4 young daughters also gets a new house, monthly airtime for life, a pedal bicycle and array of scholastic materials for his daughters.

Sebahinde was introduced to the public at the Rukara town centre in presence of the Eastern Province Governor Dr Eprahim Kabaija, and senior district officials.

MTN also officially commissioned the mast at Rukara that has enabled network coverage to the area for the first time

MTN Rwanda's achievement also comes days after the South African based MTN Group announced that its Group's subscriber base across its 21 operations in Africa and the Middle East had increased to 80,736,000 as of 30 September 2008.

According to an MTN Group statement made available to the New Times the group's South and East Africa (SEA) region in which MTN Rwanda is subscribed to, contributed 28 percent of the total subscribers while West and Central Africa (WECA) and the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) regions contributed 44 percent and 28 percent respectively.

According to the group statement as of June 2008 to September 2008, the quarter under review, Rwanda's subscriber base grew by 18 percent.

Rwanda contributes 4 percent of the SEA region overall subscribers which includes South Africa, Uganda, Swaziland, Zambia and Mascom - Botswana.

MTN Group President and Chief Executive Officer, Phuthuma Nhleko, said, "We are satisfied with the subscriber growth across our operations. As competition increases, MTN continues to explore growth opportunities."

MTN Rwandacell works with over 20,000 people engaged in the selling and distribution of airtime and public access like Tuvugane and Telimbere and they in turn contribute to the development of Rwanda.

Jean-Louis Kayitenkore
Procurement Consultant
Gsm:   +250-08470205
Home: +250-55014140
P.O. Box 3867
Kigali - RWANDA
Blog: http://www.cepgl.blogspot.com
Skype ID: kayisa66

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