Internet key in communication – Mushimba
By Staff Reporter
COMMUNICATIONS minister Dr Brian Mushimba says internet speed is a key factor now in communication.
And ZAMTEL chief executive officer Sydney Mupeta has observed that internet connectivity has now become more of a necessity than a luxury.
The duo was speaking during the launch of the roll-out of 4G network in Lusaka Province in PHI area today.
“Internet speed is a key factor now. We used to exist a lot on voice communication. But nowadays, we do minimal voice calls but multitudes of data-driven communication on the back of the speed of the internet,” Dr Mushimba said.
“So, when we are launching 4G network in Lusaka as we are doing today, we are doing something marvelous.”
He urged ZAMTEL to make sure that it considered all other areas in the country that needed 4G network.
“The future of Zambia is the ability to deliver services on the back of the ICT. The future of Zambia is increasing productivity on the back of ICT,” he indicated.
And the minister reiterated that the government was determined to curtail cyber-crimes in the country
Dr Mushimba noted that the government had seen an emergence of “thieves and criminals and fraudsters” who were trying to take advantage of the ICT platform to perpetuate criminal activities.
“This is sad! As government, we have crafted policies and laws that are going to Parliament, specifically three of them, that are going to speak to our intention to regulate and create boundaries around the [cyber] space,” said Dr Mushimba.
“Let me be clear; these regulations and boundaries are not to stifle dissenting views, freedom of speech. Freedom of expression is only freedom of expression when you don’t create victims. When you create victims, your freedom ends! As the government and as a country of laws, somebody has to step in to protect victims when you create them.”
And Mupeta pointed out that the 4G network that was being rolled-out, starting with the PHI site, had come after several months of “planning and consultations on challenges that have been faced by our dear customers.”
He added that the roll-out of 4G network came against a backdrop of customer feedback regarding the slow internet speeds being experienced with ZAMTEL’s current 3G network.
“Internet connectivity has now become more of a necessity than a luxury. We are now living in an era where mobile device users are constantly using their gadgets to connect to the internet and stay online for very long periods of time navigating different apps,” Mupeta said.
According to Mupeta, the 4G network would cover, among other places, Lusaka city, Chilanga, Kafue, Chongwe and Rufunsa and that a total of 265 sites would be upgraded to 4G, “which will give us a blanket coverage in Lusaka Province.”
ZAMTEL has already rolled out 4G network in Kitwe, Kalulushi, Mufulira, Chililabombwe and Chingola.
“You can also experience 4G speeds in towns like Kabwe, Kapiri Mposhi, Chipata, Solwezi, Mansa,” disclosed Mupeta.