Internet Disruption: Repair works on damaged subsea cables completed – NCA

Repair works on damaged subsea cables completed – NCA

The (NCA) has disclosed that repairs to the recently broken undersea cables that caused the country's total internet outage last March have been completed.

Dr. Joe Anokye, Director-General of the NCA, stated that work on all four damaged cables was completed between April 6 and May 8, 2024.

He made the announcement on Friday during the 2024 World Telecommunications and Information Society Day celebration in .

The Day was on the theme: ““Digital Innovation for Sustainable Development.”

On March 14, this year, Ghana's data services were disrupted due to underwater cable damage.

All four undersea cable landing service providers in Ghana (ACR, MainOne, SAT-3, and WACS) were disconnected from international data services, resulting in a complete internet shutdown.

Dr. Anokye said that the repair work on the broken cables was complete, and internet services were fully restored.

According to the subsea cable service providers, all four cable faults were discovered near the crossing with Le Trou Sans Fond Canyon, an underwater canyon off the coast of Abidjan.

Dr. Anokye stated that the SAT-3 cable was restored on April 6 and the ACE cable on April 17, 2024.

“The WACS cable was repaired on 29th April 2024 and the MainOne cable repairs were completed on May 8, 2024,” he added.

Dr. Anokye indicated that the Authority had begun implementing the country's satellite services policy framework to mitigate the effects of recent disruptions caused by damaged undersea cables.

This would enable the public to access innovative satellite services in addition to those available on the ground.

“This will enhance the connectivity resilience of the country considering the recent disruption of undersea fine optics cables on 14th March 2024,” he stressed.

Mrs. -Ekuful, Minister of Communications and Digitalization, called for collaboration among institutions like the , NCA, NITA, and Data Protection Commission to address identified challenges and strengthen the digital environment.

“Meaningful digital innovation does not happen in isolation. It thrives on collaboration. None of us can do it alone, we need each other and so together let us forge a path towards a brighter, more connected future for generations to come,” she charged.

Mrs Owusu-Ekuful said the government was on track to make Ghana the ICT hub of , emphasising that it had adopted some critical steps that would serve as the foundation for achieving that target.

This includes the construction of extensive in-country fiberoptic cables to complement those laid by the private sector and the construction of rural telephony sites to extend voice and data connectivity to underserved and unserved communities.

The Minister said the government would complete the construction of the remaining 1,006 rural telephony sites by September of this year, after having already built 1,010 facilities nationwide.

She said this would extend data connectivity to the 20 per cent of the population who were currently unconnected.

“We're also implementing a national roaming policy where networks can roam on each other's network where necessary to benefit from to benefit the consumer seamlessly.

“We're hopeful that that will also enable us to bridge some of the connectivity gaps that we have in the country,” the Minister added.

The World Technology and Information Day is observed on May 17 every year to raise awareness of the benefits citizens and economies could derive from the use of the internet and communication technologies (ICT) to bridge the digital divide.

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