South Africa’s Ministry of Communications has given the green light to four telecoms firms to operate small regional networks in remote, under-served areas of the country. The successful bidders are Bokone Telecoms, Kingdom Communications, Thinta Thinta Telecoms and Ilize Telecoms. The Communications Minister Matsepe Casaburri has, however, referred three applications back to the industry regulator, the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (ICASA), to confirm that they are truly broad based and will provide the levels of access promised. The four newcomers each stand to receive ZAR15 million from the country’s universal service fund to facilitate network deployment.
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