Kenya Set To Lay 995 Miles Of Fibre Optic Cable By The End of 2015
Coming just weeks after Kenya being crowned the ‘Most Intelligent City’ in Africa, the Kenyan Government has made public its plan to raise the bar for the country’s broadband connection. Through the Ministry of ICT, it has emerged that the Government is planning on installing an additional 995 miles (1,600 Km) of fibre optic cable by the end of 2015.
The move is part of Kenya’s National Optic Fibre Backbone Infrastructure (NOFBI) project launched back in 2009, aimed at connecting the entire country to high-speed internet connection. The project will position the country to leverage the advanced fibre optic cables technology known for providing superior high-speed data transmission thus faster Internet connection for users.
Once the country has successfully completed the digital migration slated for June, 2015. The government will shift its focus on establishing a 4G LTE network infrastructure across the country. However, the planned digital migration has been mere with allegations of foul play in the manner in which the process is being conducted. A situation that has led to Kenyan’s four favorite TV Stations, (KTN, NTV, Citizen and QTV) currently being off the air
The NOFBI project is expected to improve communication across Kenya as well as improving government service delivery with regards to the issuance of National Identity Cards, Passports, Birth and Death Certificates among other services.
The magnitude of the project is impressive since if or when successfully completed, it will span an area of about 1,300 miles (2,100 Km) across all the 47 counties in the country.
Dr. Fred Matiang’I, the ICT Cabinet Secretary, made this announcement at a launch event held last week for the Presidential Digital Talent Program. A flagship program set to enroll 100 graduate trainees for internship and mentorship programs in national and international tech companies.
Dr. Matiang’I said, “On the 18th of June after the digital migration, we will start on building the LTE network to allow Kenyans broader access to the internet, and we will have a real 21st century government.”
Huawei was awarded the contract for the installation of the vast infrastructure for the NOFBI project, set to connect Nairobi, to other major towns by the end of this year. The project is being funded by Government of Kenya with a supplement loan from the Government of China.
The installation of the project is being carried out in phases; back in September 2014, the eleventh phase of the project was launched in Embu County. The NOFBI project is expected to come with a comprehensive basket full of opportunities other than high-speed broadband connection; such as employment of the youth and internet connection between the National and Country Government offices.