UCC wants USD8.6 million for rural telephony rollouts

13 Sep 2005

The Uganda Communications Commission (UCC) says that it requires USD8.6 million to help develop telephone infrastructure in 154 sub-counties, as part of a USD11 million World Bank grant for the development of information and communications technologies in the country’s rural areas. The two national fixed line operators MTN Uganda and Uganda Telecom have recently tabled bids for the implementation of telephone networks in the rural districts, and the UCC is currently evaluating their offers with the aim of awarding a contract in October. Both telcos made a U-turn after earlier declaring the 154 sub-counties commercially unviable. According to the regulator, a further USD1 million in grant funds will be spent on the establishment of internet points of presence (PoPs) in 32 districts, whilst the building of 20 new tele-centres will cost USD500,000.