Salone News

Sierra Leone: Mobile Company Invests $70 Million

31 August 2006 at 23:33 | 365 views

From our Fretown Bureau

Celtel, a mobile telephone company that operates in 15 countries in Africa, and the leading mobile company in Sierra Leone has devised strategies that will put it far ahead of others .

The current tariff reduction is one of the few strategies. Celtel says they have invested $70 million in Sierra Leone and plans are underway to invest more.

Celtel started operating in Sierra Leone in the late 90s, at a time when the war was still going on the country.

The managing director of Celtel Mr. Ted Setiphuri says Celtel has been providing effective coverage in the country, adding that all the 12 districts in the country now have access to the company’s network.

"Celtel has positioned itself to respond to the needs of the people in Sierra Leone", he says.

According to him, "Celtel is No.1 in terms of quality and reliability".

He says the reduction in the tariff is to make the company’s facility accessible even to the least man in society.

The permanent secretary in the ministry of transport and communications Mr. Abdul Rahman Wurie says the tariff reduction marks "another milestone in the long and arduous journey of Celtel that started in the 90s".

He adds, "It seems they (Celtel) always take the lead and others follow". He however warns that it should not make Celtel to rest on their oars.

Photo: Celtel customer.

"In terms of service delivery, your quality is top", he says. He however stressed that government will continue to provide a level playing field to all mobile operators in the country. He says the company has provided employment opportunities for many in the country.

The Marketing Manager of Celtel Mr. Bernard Sisay jokingly said, "The bomber is now ready to fight" apparently referring to the company’s determination to climb to the topmost rung of the success ladder and leave the others far behind. He says the 50-units top up card that has been introduced, which is the cheapest in the country, is geared towards "making life better".

"We not only have the lowest tariffs, but we also have the widest coverage", he says.

Five mobile companies are presently operating in the country.

Sources say more companies abroad have applied for licences. They include Eriksson.