Loses 10% of South Su­dan cus­tomers

The Star Early Edition - - COMPANIES -

MTN GROUP’S South Su­dan unit said it has lost about 10 per­cent of its sub­scribers since vi­o­lence flared in July and half its trans­mis­sion sites are off-line, as the sub­sidiary of Africa’s big­gest mo­bile-phone com­pany by sales tries to ride out a three-year civil war. Most cus­tomers lost were in the south­ern re­gion of Equa­to­ria, which has been riven by in­se­cu­rity in the af­ter­math of fight­ing in the cap­i­tal, Juba, about 11 months ago, said Khum­bu­lani Dhlomo, MTN South Su­dan’s head of cor­po­rate ser­vices. The op­er­a­tor pre­vi­ously had about 1.2 mil­lion sub­scribers. “We have seen most cus­tomers ei­ther be­ing dis­placed, leav­ing jobs, or leav­ing the coun­try,” Dhlomo said in Juba. As an eco­nomic cri­sis caused by the war con­tin­ues, “some just left us­ing MTN be­cause they don’t have in­come”, he said. Oil-pro­duc­ing South Su­dan has seen its cur­rency col­lapse and in­fla­tion surge above 400 per­cent since con­flict erupted in De­cem­ber 2013 and curbed crude out­put.

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