MTN announced today that it is investing R749 million into the Western Cape as part of its Modernisation of Network South Africa project (MONZA).
MONZA will see an additional 1,350 sites finalised across South Africa, with total 5G coverage set to reach 179 sites in the Western Cape alone.
“Our top three targets for the province in 2022 are improving availability of the network, increasing data throughputs, and expanding our 5G footprint,” says Paul Newman, MTN’s General Manager for Western Cape Operations.
“With improved access to data changing lives, our aim is to make significant inroads into plugging existing data gaps in South Africa. We are making major strides and our progress on network modernisation in the Western Cape is already almost 72% complete,” says Newman.
The boosting of coverage into villages and peri-urban areas is aimed at bringing network and connectivity services to people in the most remote rural settlements of South Africa. Through this rural rollout, MTN aims to have over 100 rural deployments nationally in highly underserved areas by the end of 2022.
“Areas like Khayelitsha, Mitchellsplain and Philipi will benefit, all the way through to the Southern and Northern Cape. With the completion of National Long Distance (NLD) project in 2021, major commuter routes such as N2 will see a huge boost in network coverage,” continues Newman.
MTN’s investment drive will improve coverage, but also maintain and exceed quality expectations, building on the recent recognitions MTN has received for its network performance.
“Digital access brings untold benefits – we saw how access to information kept people safe and educated during the Covid-19 crisis. We saw innovation in e-commerce change the way we shop and consume products and services. And so now as the recovery begins, we need to further harness the benefits of connectivity to create more employment and growth opportunities for our people, communities and our economy,” adds Newman.
The ongoing problem of battery theft and tower vandalism still looms large, but Newman says R10.5 million will be spent on fixing damage caused by vandalism in the province, with new battery installations costing R64 million also planned.