Zain switches on network in Rumbek North County
Zain, a mobile voice and data services operator, in collaboration with the National Communications Authority (NCA) and the Lakes State government on Monday, launched their mobile telephone network in Rumbek North, Lakes State.
Speaking to Radio Tamazuj, NCA Director General Adok Gai, said what was launched is a medium tower using the existing police tower which is 32 meters high covering about 35 miles, 70 kilometers radius.
“If you are in Mapier now you will see every young man carrying a phone communicating and listening to phone music. Now instead of only listening to music, they will also communicate with people,” Adok said. “As I am speaking to you from Mapier County headquarters of Rumbek North, you can hear and judge the background of people’s happiness during the launch of Zain network.”
He said the network communication in Rumbek North County will change the lives of people there because they will have access to communication and information.
Gai said the network will boost security and allow people to keep in touch with loved ones abroad. He said plans are underway to connect Amompiny and Panyajar of Lakes and Unity States.
“We are now running out of time and their survey team is already on the ground. We are hoping that the survey team will complete before the rainy season and the next thing will be the transportation of equipment and these are determined by the level of security in the area,” Adok said. “We have other priorities in Eastern Equatoria and Upper Nile, particularly areas affected by war so we would like to restore network communication as much as we can before the rain comes because with rain some roads will become impassible and we have heavy equipment to transport.”
The commissioner of Rumbek North County, Arop Kumba Dhelbeny confirmed that the Zain network has been installed in Rumbek North County.
“The people of Rumbek North are very happy and excited and it is like a miracle because people have been calling the government to bring the network and to repair the road but now at least their hope has been restored and they are very happy,” he said.
The chairperson of the Gak community, Charles Matoch, said the community of Pakam is now connected to the world.
“Despite network communication challenges, the Pakam community still preserves our original culture. The Pakam community has not yet adopted a culture of girls and women having boyfriends which can cause misunderstanding when either a girl or woman uses a phone to communicate with an outside lover. I am sure men are the ones to use a phone for communication and no woman or girl will be allowed to use a phone,” Matoch said.
The secretary-general of the Pakam Community Youth Union in Rumbek North, Peter Machot Kumbeny, said the community members are very happy and excited since the Zain network started its operations on Sunday.
“I went to where the Zain network is installed and I found everyone celebrating, enjoying phone calls with their families outside Rumbek North. Some spoke to their families in America and Australia while others spoke to their family within the country,” Machot said.