Communications Authority of Kenya (CA) has requested mobile network operators to deploy more masts in terrains with mountains and valleys in order to enhance their quality of service, amid complaints of increased drop calls and weak signals in such the regions.
Speaking during the 18th ICT Consumer Forum, dubbed Kikao Kikuu in Nyandarua County, Mrs. Mercy Wanjau, CA’s acting director general observed that while mobile penetration in the country stands at 109 per cent, the quality of voice and data services remains the biggest challenge to consumers.
During the forum, Nyandarua County was cited as one of the regions whose topography affects the services offered by the mobile network operators. Consequently, its residents experience drop voice calls, poor internet connections and weak signals , despite 99.7 per cent of its population being covered by 2G , while 66.1 per cent is covered by 3G.
“At CA, quality of service provided to consumers is very dear to our heart. While we have a high mobile penetration in Kenya, the concerns for the quality of these services are still not satisfactory in some areas, Nyandarua County included,” Mrs Wanjau said during the forum.
The County ICT Consumer forum, organized by CA in partnership with the county governments enables communication service providers to have a deeper understanding of consumer issues and concerns as directly presented by them.
Francis Kimemia, the governor of Nyandarua noted that the county is committed to promoting faster adoption of information and communications technology (ICT). Improved network connectivity will therefore enable the residents to effectively leverage on ICT and boost their socio- economic development.
“We are cognizant of the fact that ICT has a positive impact on socio-economic development. The focus on ICT utilization and its development is therefore critical in supporting our traditional economic activities and retaining our competitiveness,” Mr. Kimemia said. “However, this can only be realized through stable networks,” he added.
Section 23 of the Kenya Communications Act, 1998, mandates the CA to ensure that the licensed telecommunications operators and service providers offer good quality services. This is also in line with the licence conditions that obligate licensees to provide good quality service to their customers.
Over the years, CA has been releasing the Quality of Service report, in line with the global best practice. While the quality of service has improved over the years, none- of the mobile network operators has met the set threshold.