Zimbabwe: NetOne Restores Mobile Service in Idai-Hit Areas

Nearly half of Cyclone Idai's victims are children.

NetOne has managed to bring up 24 out of its 27 base stations in Chimanimani and Chipinge that were destroyed by Cyclone Idai. In an interview yesterday, the parastatal's head of public relations, Dr Elderette Shereni, said they have worked hard to restore communication. "We had a total of about 27 base stations and we managed to bring almost all of them after they were destroyed by the cyclone. There are only three that were down when I checked this week," she said.

There was a blackout in Chimanimani and Chipinge after the cyclone destroyed communication and power infrastructure.

Dr Shereni said a Government logistics team is assisting the NetOne team to access base stations to refuel generators for the boosters.

"The other three base stations are still down because the roads are still inaccessible. We have had a lot of help from the logistics team on the ground in terms of trying to assist our team to get on site to refuel generators because some of the power lines were also affected, a lot of them are running on generators," she said.

Dr Shereni said it had been difficult to ferry fuel to some sites using trucks due to damaged roads and as such locals were assisting by ferrying fuel using jerry cans.

NetOne also helped Cyclone Idai victims by donating food worth RTGS$50 000.

The company also created a biller code through its One Money mobile wallet where subscribers send their contributions towards relief efforts.

"We also ran an internal staff plea across all our shops to say donate whatever you have such as clothes, shoes and blankets and the response has been overwhelming," said Dr Shereni.

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