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MTC to disburse towers on farms in pursuit of 100% coverage

05/02/2018
by Kelvin Chiringa
Business

Mobile telecommunications company MTC’s acting Managing Director, Thinus Smit has informed that the company will disburse 524 new towers many of which will be erected on farms in the pursuit to provide 100% network coverage.

Namibia Agricultural Union’s Erika von Gierszewski indicated that the union’s newly appointed Executive Manager, Roelie Venter and Danie van Vuuren met Smit for an enquiry on the progress made so far with regards to network coverage in the country.

Information coming from NAU has it that MTC teams have already visited numerous farmers to brief them about the agreements which they will enter with MTC. 

“The NAU offered their assistance to MTC with the finalising of rental agreements with our members,” said Erika in a written circular.

The first 63 towers will be built once the environmental impact studies have been completed, this publication has learnt. 

In the meantime 63 existing towers were upgraded from 2G to 3G.

While service interruptions however still occur due to the overlapping with frequencies of two-way radios, Smit ensured that they are busy solving these problems, said Erika.

Smit also pointed out that due to the location of some farm houses (e.g. behind mountains or in valleys), they might not get any reception, rather, these farmers will have to put up multiplier antennas or towers.

“MTC further undertook to update the NAU about their project from time to time so that their members can be kept updated. Mr Smit also confirmed that the Leonardville tower, which was blown over has been repaired and will be in operation again on February 09,” said Erika. 

Meanwhile in other farming news, the NAU will be hosting its Agribraai competition which dates back to 1981 and is a tough competition as all dishes must be prepared over coals, from the starter to the dessert and no webers and electrical equipment may be used. 

In the beginning, the menu was given to the teams before the time to enable them to prepare for the competition, but later on it was decided not to announce the menu before the time.

The competition is supported by sponsors as such a prestige opportunity is expensive and it is one of the opportunities where farmers come together to not only braai, but also visit socially.

Social teams can also participate in the braai and these are mostly from local companies which are involved in agriculture.

The winning prize is N$30 000 which money should be used to host the competition the next year.

The 2018 AgriBraai is hosted by the Kalahari Oos FA and will be held at the Gobabis show grounds on May the 25th and 26th, 2018 at the Gobabis Show grounds. 

The theme is “Cattle Country Cowboy” and on Saturday night the Campbells will perform. 

FA’s are now already encouraged to participate this year and the entries close on April 30. 

The NAU further informs stakeholders that Agra ProVision is offering the following courses: Basic Farm Management from February 19 – 22 in Windhoek, the impact of proper rangeland management, labour, importance of record keeping will be discussed and the costs are N$3 070 per person as well as a talk about self-insurance of farmers and a savings plan for farm workers.

Gobabis RAU will also be hosting a NAU open day on February 27 at 08:00.

After the meeting in the afternoon an LTR2 curse will be offered and Johan de Jager will be the speaker.