6th May, 2014
Nigeria’s National telecom carrier, Globacom, has announced that its massive network expansion, swapping of old base stations with new ones and modernization of existing infrastructure is now in its final stage.
Globacom’s Chief Operating Officer (GCOO), Mr. Mohamed Jameel disclosed this at an interactive session with the media at Intercontinental Hotel, Victoria Island, Lagos.
Mr. Jameel, who addressed the media in company of other top executives of the company, including its Head of Operations, Mr. Bisi Koleosho, said that by the time the project is completed, Globacom would have completely swapped old components on the network across the nation with state-of-the-art network software and hardware.
In addition, the Globacom network, according to him, will have 90 percent 3G coverage, the first in the industry, making it possible for Glo data subscribers across the country to experience significant service enhancement. He added that the project should be completed by the second quarter of the year.
The national operator had embarked on the network upgrade as part of its 10th anniversary celebration in August last year. It said then that the expansion project was to accommodate the mass movement of subscribers into the network.
The sharp increase in subscriber figures, the company explained, led to the need to expand and densify areas of congestion.
The duo of Mr. Jameel and Mr. Koleosho assured subscribers that service improvement is already being felt in various parts of the country, adding that the improvement will continue and manifest nationally by the time the project is completed.
Mr. Jameel said: “having played a prominent role in the first telecom revolution in the country, Globacom is now ready to lead Nigeria into the second revolution, which will be an explosive ICT broadband growth across Nigeria in the next three decades.
“Globacom will be the biggest player in the second telecommunication revolution in Nigeria. We are converting every cell site in Nigeria into broadband. We regret any inconvenience our subscribers might have experienced in the process of the unprecedented network upgrade and expansion. After rain comes sunshine. Nigerians will enjoy the massive transformation on the Glo network after the expansion and modernisation exercise.”
Expatiating on the expansion and modernisation project, Mr. Koleosho said already, the swapping of cell sites has been completed in Abuja, Oyo State, Osun State, Ogun State, Akwa Ibom State, Port Harcourt and several parts of Lagos including Lekki, Ikorodu, Agbara and Otta. The exercise is almost completed in Surulere and Ikeja.
He added that efforts have been intensified to cover the remaining parts of the country.
He disclosed that the project covers swapping, upgrade, and overhaul of network infrastructure, as well as building of new switches and construction of additional 4,000 km of optic fibre cable to complement the company’s existing fibre optic facility, which is among the most extensive private fibre networks in Africa. The company’s existing 10,000km optic fibre network is also being expanded with IP MPLS and Dense Wavelength Division Multiplexing (DWDM) network to provide capacity and route protection. It will also ensure constant (24/7) connectivity.
The massive project, according to Koleosho, also includes installation of new base stations and densification of existing ones, setting up of three new call centers across the country to take care of vast increase in subscriber figures and upgrade of the radio access network which will ensure that data customers enjoy unparalleled speed and reliability.
He said that “Lagos is receiving special attention because of its peculiar status. Glo’s microwave network in the major commercial nerve centre is getting transformed into a full IP Network geared up to meet future data requirements of the rapidly expanding state.”
Koleoso said the three mini call centers are being built in Abuja, Port Harcourt and Lekki, Lagos. Some of these, according to him, have been opened, while the others are ready for commissioning.
He added that the new call centres will lead to faster turnaround time and greater customer care experience for subscribers.
Leading telecom equipment vendors, Alcatel Lucent, Huawei, ZTE and Ericsson, are the partners working on the Glo network upgrade.
Some journalists used the forum to extol the remarkable stride Globacom is making to further revolutionize the telecoms landscape in Nigeria.