News is that there will soon be a new kid on the block in the Zambian Telecommunications arena. Apparently, digital migration will lead to this development, according to the Transport and Communications Minister, Yamfwa Mukanga. As it turns out, the delayed completion of the nation’s digital migration process is holding back the award of a fourth telecoms licence.
“The fourth mobile service provider will come with many advantages such as reduced cost of making phone calls and other services,” said the Minister. But for how long, we wonder.
It was further noted that the country would have to make some spectrum available on the current frequency, which he said would be done when the digital migration project is completed.
Additionally, it is rumoured that Vodacom will be the fourth telecom to join Zambia’s MSP (Mobile Service Provider) trio: Airtel Zambia, MTN Zambia and Zamtel.
According to IT Web Africa, Vodacom and local Unitel Communications which formed Vodacom Zambia were awarded a telecom license 7 years ago. However, the license was later withdrawn by the government through ZICTA amid claims there that there wasn’t enough spectrum in the country. IT Web Africa further stated that, Vodacom Zambia chairman, Enoch Kavindele, said he had written to new Zambian president Michael Sata asking him to restore Vodacom Zambia’s licence.
On the other hand, the Transport and Communications Minister said that the Zambian government will open the invitation to whichever company that will be interested to operate the fourth mobile network.
Considering the run around statements from the Minister and no exact time frame being provided, we are taking a guess that this is not going to be happening this year. The digital migration has already taken forever to complete with bid postponements and then cancellations. It is difficult to have confide