VODACOM Tanzania has said technology and connectivity have the potential to create a more equitable and inclusive digital society.
The Director of Corporate Affairs at Vodacom Tanzania Ms Rosalynn Mworia said in Dar es Salaam yesterday that the telecom company prioritises rural communities' coverage through its rural coverage acceleration programme.
"In partnership with Universal Communication Service Access Fund (UCSAF), Vodacom has extended its mobile network coverage in rural areas to cover 92 per cent of the population," she said.
She added, as part of its Africa. Connected initiative and in line with its social contract, Vodacom is determined to provide wide internet adoption among Tanzanians.
It has set itself a target of bringing broadband internet connectivity to 65 per cent of the population by the end of 2021 and a final target of 90 per cent by 2024.
"This is in line with the government's stated goal of raising broadband coverage from 45 per cent to 80 per cent," she noted.
As of now, broadband connectivity provided by Vodacom covers approximately 52 per cent of the population in 1,184 villages upcountry.
For over two decades now, Vodacom has made a huge investment in its network to provide customers with the latest technology as well as the most innovative products and solutions available in the market.
For example with investments valued at 171.4bn/- on 4G alone, Vodacom currently maintains over 3,000 2G sites, 2,800 3G sites and over 2,000 4G sites that make it widest network coverage in the country reaching 92 per cent of the population.
This network coverage is backed up by the latest in technological capabilities and innovative and relevant products and services thus allowing Vodacom users to truly benefit from the access they get.
One such service is the M-Pesa mobile money platform that has accumulated over 10 million users serviced by a nationwide network of more than 107,000 agents.
Over the years, this platform has evolved to reach rural customers who otherwise have no access to formal financial services. Furthermore, this platform is also the basis for connecting farmers to vital information and payment systems through the M-Kulima service, with over 10,000 active users.
The country-wide reach of the Vodacom network also serves as a basis for the delivery of life-saving interventions to rural area users. In collaboration with CCBRT for example, over 6,000 fistula patients have received surgical treatments, the vast majority being people from rural areas.