Technology News From Liberia
|Richmond Nagbe Tobii - LIBTELCO's New Managing Director
The West African nation of Mauritania lost all internet access for 48 hours due to an undersea cable break, according to infrastructure analysts.
The break, which took place a couple weeks ago, provides a reminder of how much internet users rely on the cables that connect their countries.
According to Dyn, the Oracle-owned internet performance firm, the African Coast to Europe (ACE) cable was cut near Noukachott in Mauritania on March 30. It’s not clear what caused the break, but six countries entirely rely on that one cable for their connectivity, and all--Sierra Leone, Mauritania, Liberia, Guinea-Bissau, Guinea and the Gambia--saw a big impact. Read more...
LIBTELCO gets a new Managing Director
March 2018: Richmond Nagbe Tobii was appointed as LIBTELCO's new Managing Director by President George Weah replacing Darren Wilkins.
CSquared: Building a fiber Network in Monrovia
On May 16, 2017, Google, Convergence Partners, International Finance Corporation (“IFC”), and Mitsui & Co., Ltd. (“Mitsui”) signed an agreement to invest in CSquared, a technology company making commercially-driven investments into broadband-enabling infrastructure throughout Africa. CSquared will operate as an independent company based in Nairobi. Closing of the transaction is subject to customary closing conditions.
While a basic connection is useful when it comes to Internet access, abundant, affordable broadband can transform communities and help people make the most of opportunities online. By investing in a shared internet infrastructure and making it available to local ISPs and mobile operators, CSquared helps bring high-quality broadband access to Africa’s major cities.
Monrovia – The Managing Director of the Liberia Telecommunications Corporation (LIBTELCO) Dr. Darren Wilkins has said that LIBTELCO has a strategy to work with Google/C-Squared to deliver Internet services to Government and the people of Liberia.
Dr. Wilkins said that as the National Operator, LIBTELCO has a mandate as enshrined in the Telecommunications Act of 2007 and the National Telecommunications and ICT policy, to provide ICT services to Government and the people of Liberia. Read more...
Monrovia Liberia November 5, 2016- Lonestar Cell MTN has revealed that it is experiencing unprecedented and repeated cyber-attacks in the form of Distributed Denial of Service (DDOS) from hackers sponsored by its competitors. The situation has caused intermittent service disruption in the delivery of the company’s data and other services.
The company in a statement said it is profoundly disturbing to find its competitors treading on such unorthodox practice that could have far reaching national security and economic implications.
“For the past weeks, we noticed a constant build-up of artificial volumes of data on our internet links. These artificial volumes are caused by malicious cyber activities that target our system with the aim of clogging or blocking connectivity in the network. However, we continued to react and restore service to each incident as it happens. From all indications, these attacks are only directed at Lonestar Cell MTN in the Telecommunications sector. These cyber activities coming from competitors have serious national security and economic implications.” Read more...
Someone is trying to take down the whole Internet of a country by launching massive distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks using a botnet of insecure IoT devices infected by the Mirai malware.
It all started early October when a cybercriminal publically released the source code of Mirai – a piece of nasty IoT malware designed to scan for insecure IoT devices and enslaves them into a botnet network, which is then used to launch DDoS attacks.
Just two weeks ago, the Mirai IoT Botnet caused vast internet outage by launching massive DDoS attacks against DNS provider Dyn, and later it turns out that just 100,000 infected-IoT devices participated in the attacks. Read more...
Wednesday, 21st September 2016: -- President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf announced today at the USA-Africa Business Forum in New York, NY that as a part of their Public-Private Partnership initiative, Liberia will be collaborating with Google and USAID to bring best-in-class, reliable, affordable broadband infrastructure to Liberia’s capital city of Monrovia.
"Unfortunately, Liberia has one of the lowest internet penetration rates in the world and access to fiber connectivity costs significantly more than neighboring countries." said President Johnson-Sirleaf. "This initiative will expand connectivity by reducing costs of access and will play a vital part in the path forward to help Liberian youth fulfill the promise of a new generation. We expect this will boost the economy, support Telemedicine and connected health programs, as well as extended education resources in universities and primary school classrooms." Read more...
Says Chairman Weeks; Denies Knowledge of Lonestar's alleged US$30 Million Bid to Buy Novafone.
The attempt by the Liberia Telecommunication Corporation (LIBTELCO) to purchase Novafone is "off the table," the Daily Observer has reliably learnt.
The Chairperson of the Liberia Telecommunication Authority (LTA), Ms. Angelique Weeks, told this newspaper in an exclusive interview yesterday that the LIBTELCO bid to buy Novafone will not hold because the deal is now "off the table."
Ms. Weeks declined to go into details about the failure of the deal to go through. She said she preferred the newspaper to contact directly the parties concerned and let them speak for themselves.
The Daily Observer contacted Mr. Abdullah L. Kamara, Novafone's Executive Vice President for Operations, to comment on the cancellation of LIBTELCO's purchase deal, but he said he "could neither confirm nor deny" that the deal was "off the table." Read more...
By Ciata Victor
(Monrovia, May 3, 2016) Fiber optics especially at the physical layer is one of the things few Liberians truly understand. I happened to be one of the few who do.
Fiber Optics for Liberia has always been a passion for me, it why I studied network engineering in school, it was why I focused on the physical layer as a LAN / WAN Engineer before coming home in 2006, with the idea of helping Liberia acquire the technology.
Since coming home I have written several articles about technology in Liberia and how different players were having both positive and negative effects on implementing ICT in Liberia. Read more...
"LIBTELCO cannot choose to invest in a failing mobile phone company for $30 million dollars while neglecting to invest in its basic infrastructure, a fiber distribution network for Monrovia the financial and political capitol of Liberia"
All around the city of Monrovia you see these large billboards with messages encouraging Monrovians to "Stop Corruption", and right under some of these billboards along Tubman Boulevard, are ducts belonging to LIBTELCO a company that is begging for an investigation.
In 2013 under the management of Ben Wolo, the Government of Liberia told LIBTELCO managing director and board that it did not have $7.5 Million Dollars to fund the construction of a Metropolitan Fiber Optic Network, which if funded would have been the starting investment in a fiber distribution network for Liberia. Read more
President Sirleaf listens attentively as the Cellcom - Orange delegation briefs her on developments thus far
(MONROVIA, LIBERIA – Wednesday, February 3, 2016) President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf has welcome the proposal of Orange, through its subsidiary Orange Côte d’Ivoire, in acquiring 100 percent the Cellcom - Liberia subsidiary.
“We want to see this investment. We want to see you expand telecommunication services to our population and interconnectivity to our neighboring countries as well as the world,” she stressed, adding that her government encourages this partnership and investment which is good for Liberia.
The Liberian leader indicated that she expects that Orange will be good corporate citizens and do what they can as a partner to government, most especially in ensuring that employees are taken care of.
According to an Executive Mansion release, President Sirleaf made the assertion when a high-level delegation of Cellcom-Liberia and Orange paid her a courtesy call.
She hoped that both sides (Government and Orange) will work assiduously to meet the target date of February 9, 2016 to conclude the technical details of the agreement. Read more...
Orange will acquire 100% of the mobile operator Cellcom Liberia
Orange today announced it has entered into a firm agreement with Cellcom Telecommunications Limited
PARIS, France, January 12, 2016/ -- Orange (www.Orange.com) today announced it has entered into a firm agreement with Cellcom Telecommunications Limited to acquire, through its subsidiary Orange Côte d’Ivoire, 100% of Cellcom’s Liberia subsidiary, the leading mobile operator* in Liberia, with the strongest market commercial momentum.
Orange will provide its marketing expertise and world-class technical capability to further strengthen the network operator, enhance services to consumers and contribute to the economic growth of Liberia. Cellcom’s founders and employees will remain involved in the business to ensure a smooth integration, support performance and continue long-standing relations with the Government of Liberia.
This acquisition is part of the international development strategy of Orange, which aims to accelerate its growth by entering new emerging markets with high potential. This will enable Orange to strengthen its positions in Africa, which is a strategic priority for the Group.
Liberia is a country of over 4.3 million inhabitants, with a mobile penetration rate of 66%, lower than in many neighbouring countries. With a national mobile license and its significant market share in the country in number of subscribers, Cellcom has excellent potential for growth over the coming years.
The completion of the transaction remains subject to approval by the competent authorities. - The End -
LIBTELCO gets a new Managing Director
(Monrovia July 2014) President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf announced Mr. Sebastian Muah as the new Managing Director of the Liberian Telecommunications Corporation (LIBTELCO). Mauh replaces Ben Wolo who served as Managing Director from 2007 to 2014 and under whose administration, Liberia landed it's first Fiber Optic Cable.
Technology: Liberia's ICT 2014 Forecast: What To Expect, What Not To Expect
A few years ago, access to Information and Communications Technologies or ICTs (computers, phones, TV, etc) was binary: some people had access to technology, and some did not. That disparity endures even though we have made significant progress over the years. There is no doubt that we have evolved from very little or no technology, to a mobile and fast technology that actually supports a range of communications, participatory, and transactional applications. Now, access to ICTs is more essential and valuable and disconnection from ICTs is consequential for society. Addressing the cause of digital exclusion is about developing the capacity of one's people to leverage the abundance of digital resources that we have today. Full story...
by Ciata Victor
This week the news has been all about the nearly 25,000 Liberian High School Graduates that failed the University of Liberia entrance exam, with officials saying they did not have a basic grasp of English. I am sure they also don't have a basic grasp of Reading, Math, Science or Literature. Full commentary...
By Ciata Victor
Monrovia - January 2, 2014: In October 2013, the Chairman of the Cable Consortium of Liberia (CCL) and the government representative to the Consortium, Eden Charles Reeves resigned his position at the Finance Ministry citing a lack of support from the Ministry for the IT related projects he managed. Eden Reeves exit opened the way for Sebastian Muah to slide into CCL in the key position of Chairman of the Board of Directors with responsibility over the management of GOL 55% interest in the Cable Consortium.
With baby brother Paul Muah strategically placed at LIBTELCO and set to take over the leadership of the Corporation which includes the management of LIBTELCO’s 20% interest in CCL, the brothers Sebastian and Paul Muah if Paul is appointed by the President to serve as Managing Director of LIBTELCO, are set to control 75% of Liberia’s Fiber capacity and 100% of the Government of Liberia entire investment in the ACE Cable System and the Cable Consortium of Liberia. Read more...
France Telecom Orange announces the launch of service for the ACE submarine cable in the first 13 countries
France Telecom Orange and the other members of the Africa Coast to Europe (ACE) consortium announced in a ceremony held today in Banjul, The Gambia, that the ACE submarine cable is now operational for the first phase linking France and Sao Tomé & Principe. Full story...
Ben Wolo did at LIBTELCO?
Wolo, Former Managing Director - LIBTELCO
I was asked by a young man "What has Ben Wolo done
wasn't surprised at the question. As a Technologist
who has made advertising a business, I know that even
if you have the best product in the entire world and
no one knows about it, it means very little. Ben Wolo
is one of those rare and good products that Liberia
has but few people know of his potential or understand
his value to LIBTELCO.
an insider who has worked closely with Ben at LIBTELCO
for over 5 years, and on the ACE Fiber Optic Project
that is ongoing, I would like to answer this question,
not only for the young man who asked it, but also for
anyone else who is interested in knowing. Full
Liberia Telecommunications Corporation (LTC, now LIBTELCO)
has resuscitated the previously neglected Telecom with
a wireless 3G
system based on CDMA
EV-DO technology, enabling LIBTELCO to enter
the mobile market as a fifth player who is providing
wireless broadband services. There are also plans for
a national fibre backbone network.
services are currently available from a number of
wireless ISPs and the mobile networks using GPRS,
technology. The high cost and limited bandwidth
of existing satellite connections means that most service
offerings today are expensive and below broadband speed.
The Landing of the ACE Fibre
Optic Submarine Cable which landed in Liberia
on November 3, 2011 has caused excitment in Liberia's
Telecommunication Sector as operators and Internet Users
eagerly look foward to late 2012, when the service is
expected to go online and be available to consumers.
Announces the Landing of Liberias First Fiber
Optic Cable System (ACE)
November 1, 2011): The Cable Consortium of Liberia
(CCL) is pleased to announce that The Africa Coast
to Europe (ACE) submarine cable will be landing in
Monrovia, Liberia on Thursday November 3rd, 2011.
The landing of this cable marks Liberias entrance
into the Digital age, by making available true broadband
connectivity to the rest of the world. Full
is ACE and where we are in the process?
The Africa Coast to Europe (ACE) submarine communication
cable, is a planned Fiber Optic Cable system that will
run along the West Coast of Africa between France and
South Africa. More...
breaks new telecommunication grounds with her entrance
into ACE Consortium and the signing of the Construction
and Maintenance Agreement in Paris
African Countries met in Paris for the signing of the
ACE Construction and Maintenance Agreement contract
with France Telecom on Saturday, June 5, 2010.
Construction and Maintenance Agreement (C&MA) was
signed at the EIFFEL tower in Paris with French and
African Officials present. At the signing ceremony,
the Liberian delegation included, Senator Gbonzonga
Findley, chairman of the Post and Telecommunication
committee in the senate, LTA Chairperson, Madame Angelique
Weeks, LTA Commissioner Harry Yuan, LIBTELCO Managing
Director, Ben Wolo who signed on behalf of the Cable
consortium of Liberia, LIBTELCO Board Member Ciata Victor,
and Lonestar Representative Nathaniel Ejiogu Kevin.
station landing in Liberia is owned by a Special
Purpose Vehicle called the Cable Consortium of Liberia,
(CCL) a consortium comprising of
LIBTELCO, LONESTAR and CELLCOM. Full