Botswana: Broadband Strategy All Encompassing

| July 7, 2016

The Minister of Transport and Communications, Mr Tshenolo Mabeo says his ministry has developed a broadband strategy which provides a holistic and coordinated approach to the implementation of the ICTs ecosystem in the country with a view to achieve long-term strategic outcomes.

Mr Mabeo said the overall vision of the strategy was to connect every citizen, business, communities and the country to a high-speed broadband infrastructure at appropriate quality of service and affordable prices. The minister further said the monitoring of the agreed broadband strategy action plans and deliverables were regularly tracked and evaluated.

"In order to keep on monitoring the quality of service to ensure the customer gets value for money, BOCRA has acquired a quality of service monitoring tool which will be used to check the quality of services of the operators.

BOCRA will also continue with consumer education and awareness on issues of quality service," he said.

Furthermore, the minister said his ministry "continues to urge BOCRA and operators to inform the public in cases where there are network outages or unavailability of services." He also informed Parliament that he was aware of the slow and unreliable Internet services across the country.

He added that the distribution of Internet connectivity to businesses, learning institutions and domestic users was done through various technologies by different licensed service providers.

He said the distribution technologies included mobile networks, dedicated leased lines, asymmetric digital subscriber lines and other technologies, adding that the "choice of these technologies is dependent on the customer needs including bandwidth, reliability and price."

Mr Mabeo noted that the issue on quality service for the Internet was complex since there were many factors involved such as the high contention ration on Asynchronous Digital Subscriber Lines (ADSL), limited coverage of third generation (3G) and forth generation (4G) mobile networks which offer better Internet experience.

Other factors, he explained, include limited access network which connects customer premises to the telecommunications network, customers purchase lower data packages and share it among many users, some public telecommunications operators and Internet service providers experience congestion in Internet capacity that they have procured from various wholesale providers.

The MP for Selebi Phikwe West, Mr Dithapelo Keorapetse had asked the minister if he was aware of concerns from businesses, learning institutions and domestic users about the slow and erratic Internet.

MP Keorapetse wanted the minister to also explain what causes this slow, unreliable Internet, and how and when will it be addressed.

Source: Botswana Daily News

Category: Sports

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