Submarine Fiber Optic Cable Breaks; Widespread Internet Disruptions Across Africa

Submarine Fiber Optic Cable Breaks; Widespread Internet Disruptions Across Africa
Internet

Written by Afua Amankwanowa


Widespread internet outages have gripped Ghana and various other African nations due to multiple disruptions in submarine fiber optic cables. The ramifications of these breaks in crucial undersea cables have rippled across the region, causing significant connectivity issues in countries such as Ivory Coast, Liberia, Benin, Ghana, and Burkina Faso. Furthermore, Cameroon, Gabon, Namibia, and Niger have also experienced disruptions, albeit to a lesser extent, while Nigeria and South Africa have been somewhat affected as well.


In Ghana, the National Communications Authority (NCA) has stepped forward to address the situation, issuing a detailed press statement elucidating the root causes of the disruptions. According to the NCA, the interruptions have stemmed from breaks in multiple undersea cables responsible for facilitating Mobile and Fixed Data services nationwide. These breaks have been identified in cables linking Senegal, Cote d'Ivoire, and Portugal, exacerbating the challenges faced by internet users across Ghana.


As a consequence of these cable faults, Ghana has witnessed a substantial degradation in data services, impacting businesses, educational institutions, and individuals reliant on internet connectivity for various activities. Recognizing the urgency of the matter, Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) have mobilized their resources and technical expertise to expedite the restoration of full services. In tandem with these efforts, MNOs have been actively engaging with affected customers through diverse communication channels to provide updates and offer support amid the disruptions.


Meanwhile, the Ghana Chamber of Telecommunications has underscored its commitment to resolving the ongoing challenges by launching comprehensive investigations into the root causes of the disruptions. These investigations, aimed at identifying vulnerabilities and implementing preventive measures, are crucial steps toward ensuring the resilience of Ghana's telecommunications infrastructure in the face of such unforeseen events.


Amidst the turmoil, it has been observed that while some fiber optic cables have been completely incapacitated, others continue to operate at diminished capacities, further complicating the efforts to restore seamless connectivity across the region. Nonetheless, stakeholders within the telecommunications ecosystem remain steadfast in their resolve to mitigate the impacts of these disruptions and safeguard the uninterrupted flow of communication services to communities and businesses alike.

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