New network tower for Walvis Bay
09 February 2020 | Infrastructure
Stanley Simataa, Minister; “For Namibia to reap the dividends of the yet to be exploited digital economy, connectivity must be guaranteed.”
The ground-breaking ceremony of a brand new network tower by PowerCom took place on Friday at Walvis Bay’s Extension 17.
The investment is part of PowerCom’s infrastructure footprint expansion strategy amounting to an estimated N$24 million for the construction of 19 towers by September 2020.
A total of N$5 602 600 will be invested at the harbour town alone, through the construction and refurbishment of four other towers at the Walvis Bay Harbour, Walvis Bay Golf Course, Walvis Bay Ext.17, Narraville and the refurbishment of Walvis Bay Tower Walkway.
PowerCom’s CEO Alisa Amupolo said that Walvis Bay is of vital importance and that’s why the company would like to align themselves with the town’s growth and respond to demands of its inhabitants.
“There has never been occupancy at this specific extension but due to the Oil Processing Hub, apartment blocks, a service station and a shopping mall in the future, it is a location demanding the type of communications infrastructure investment PowerCom offers.”
Amupolo said that communities need to be connected, adding coverage is poor precisely because those communities were not anticipated when infrastructure was first put in place.
“When communities expand, it is PowerCom’s job to be there and meet the demands of those citizens.”
She mentioned with the addition of Farm 37, PowerCom has already began examining their infrastructure plans for 2021.
“This is to ascertain whether that community could also be serviced by ICT infrastructure. As communities continue to expand, PowerCom’s commitment is to be present and aid in that expansion.”
She said that on average, it takes around 90 days to construct a tower.
“As the foundation of Walvis Bay Ext 17 has already been established, the tower will be fully constructed by 20 March. It will be fully operational by 1 April, with connected clients able to utilize its services.”
The planned tower is a 30m Camouflaged Palm Tree tower and is monopole with the top 6m of the tower consist of a lattice section which will accommodate the outdoor antenna and is camouflaged by palm tree leaf cladding to hide the telecommunications equipment.
The minister of information, communication and technology, Stanley Simataa, said that for citizens to meaningfully participate in democratic processes, connectivity is crucial.
“If you scan the mechanics of most global economies today, you will realise that their operations are digitally enabled. For SMEs to efficiently manage their business operations, connectivity is a necessity, for young innovators to indulge innovations which is their forte, connectivity is needed. For Namibia to reap the dividends of the yet to be exploited digital economy, connectivity must be guaranteed."
“In addition, we continue to see an escalation of vandalism of ICT infrastructure. Such acts are tantamount to sabotage of the developmental aspirations of our country. As government, we appeal to you as individuals, as communities and as a nation to shun such criminal acts for they are a serious draw back to our national efforts to economic and social emancipation.”
Simataa said that it’s of no value to boast of having modern ICT infrastructure if utilisation of such infrastructure is not fully maximized.
“We must address a host of issues that impair the maximization of ICT infrastructure, key of which are affordability and low levels of digital literacy. I encourage the business sector to leverage enormous business opportunities accorded by ongoing improvements in ICT infrastructure. Let’s expand the existing bouquet of products and services provided and improve the efficiency with which such services are provided.”