President signs off $9 million loan for National Fiber project

FIber cable NITA uganda

After several years of investigation, the President has signed a $9 million (UGX 26 billion) loan deal from Exim Bank for implementing the 3rd phase of the National fiber project. While in China last week, President Museveni approved  the loan for the third phase of the NBI that had been put on halt following a 2012 investigation by the Auditor General.

The project was reportedly put on halt following a 2012 investigation by the Auditor General that accused both the government and Huawei Technologies for procurement recklessness and little value for money respectively. According to the Daily Monitor who spoke to a spokesperson of National Information Technology Authority, Uganda (NITA-U), Mr Leonah Mponimba,  said:

 “Phase 3 shall involve further implementation of 756km of installed optical fiber cable and extend to the towns of Masaka, Mutukula, Mbarara, Kabale and Katuna.

The aim of the UGX 300 billion project was to slowly reduce the dependence of using the satellite link for telephones and other forms of data transmission, to reduce related costs for the government by half. It was planned to be implemented in four phases, three of which were to be financed by a $106m (about Shs293.5b) loan from China. The project is part of an East African Community terrestrial fibre optic cable covering 15,600km, which is supposed to link all the five EAC countries of Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda and Burundi, to the rest of the world through the under-sea cable in Mombasa.

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Source: Daily Monitor

Image Credit: techrepublic