Uganda decides on alternative fibre-optic cable through Tanzania

Uganda has decided on getting an alternative underground fibre-optic cable through Tanzania to guard itself from the cable interruptions on the Kenyan line that affect the country’s Internet connections from time to time.

The National Information Technology Authority Uganda (NITA-U) is already working on the alternative routes, according to Peter Kahiigi, the Director Technical Services at NITA-U.

“An alternative route through Tanzania has been planned by NITA-U and the government, and we expect to start work at least by November 2012,” Kahiigi said while speaking at the 8th Annual International Conference on Computing and Research, held at Protea Hotel in Kampala, Uganda.

Kahiigi explained that cable failures in places like Nakuru Kenya usually hold Uganda at ransom resulting to slow Internet speeds that inconvenience users. This has been occasioned to vandalisms and cable cuts at the sea. Uganda experienced immense interruptions in March 2012, resulting from the cutting of the cables at sea by ships.

Kahiigi went ahead to clarify that the alternative route “is not because the broadband through Kenya is slow,” but because Uganda needs a reliable internet connection hence the need for an alternative.

The details for the works have not been made public yet although it is speculated the works could start as early as September 2012.

Uganda has over 5 million Internet users who are in a constant need for more broadband and stable connections. The project is meant to act as mitigation against future disruptions on the Kenyan route.

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