Namibia’s mobile network operator Mobile Telecommunications Company (MTC), continues to negotiate with governments of Southern African countries to end the current moratorium placed on the deployment of 5G networks.
The entity wants the moratorium lifted so mobile operators can start laying the foundation for 5G deployment. Tim Ekandjo, MTC’s chief human capital and corporate affairs officer, said 5G network is essential for 4IR, and there is a need for “a conducive policy” to stimulate participation rather than inhibit it.
“With 5G comes high data rates, energy serving, reduced latency, cost reductions and higher system changes. Almost every African country has embraced 5G technology and is enjoying its benefits. Unfortunately, we still have a moratorium on 5G. Sadly, a country that has always been first in rolling out technologies has now become the last due to conspiracy theories that don’t make sense in the first place. We cannot talk about the Fourth Industrial Revolution without mentioning 5G,” Ekandjo explained.
MTC and multinational tech firm Huawei Technologies have committed to a partnership agreement with the Namibian University of Science and Technology (NUST) to support the Smart Campus Initiative.
According to Ekandjo, the initiative is an organised effort to contribute towards 5G technology training, infrastructure development and the development of a solid foundation for 5G rollout.
The agreement represents the appeal of collaborators to the government to end the moratorium.
In 2020 Ekandjo mentioned that the company was planning to implement the 5G technology but highlighted that it had to be done responsibly.
Ekandjo said, “MTC has always trial a new technology first with the full permission of all relevant authorities.”
In the same year, the Ministry of Environment, Forestry and Tourism was tasked with conducting a strategic environmental assessment on the introduction of 5G technology in the country.
The government also charged the Ministry of Information and Communications Technology to accelerate the development of a 5G strategy for the country, which will be submitted to the cabinet for consideration.
Until the tasks are complicated, the government said no operator would be permitted to rollout 5G technology in the country. However, authorities have not published any report on the strategic environmental assessment or publicised details of an official 5G strategy.