The Kenyan telecommunications companies, Safaricom and Telkom, have been granted tenders by the Communications Authority of Kenya (CA).
CA offered Sh1.24bn (US$12.2mn) in tenders – Safaricom’s tender is worth Sh888mn ($8.7mn) whilst Telkom’s is valued at Sh350mn ($3.4mn).
The companies aim to expand their coverage, targeting unserved areas and voice services. The Turkana, Wajir, Garissa, and Kwale counties will all subject to the venture.
The project has enabled connectivity for 238,082 people across the country so far, with the goal set to reach 319,298 members of the public.
In Kenya, there are currently 164 sub-locations that have no network coverage.
“Now the operators would ordinarily not put their network in these places because economically they are not viable to them but as a government we wanted everybody to stay connected,” remarked Nixon Mageka, Official at the Universal Service Advisory Council (USAC).
“We will help them go to areas which they would not ordinarily go but which we want them to go.”
So far, Safaricom has connected 37 of its 48 stations, whilst Telkom has connect 12 out of 14.