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Glo under pressure in Ghana

Glo under pressure in Ghana.

Ghana's National Communication Authority (NCA) has given telecommunications service provider Glo until December 2016 to extend its 3G coverage to all 21 district capitals in the country's northern region.

This follows an assessment of cellular mobile services between February and March 2016, released 1 June, which showed that Glo is the only telco without any 3G coverage in any of the capitals under review.

The 3G-locked mode coverage samples are collected by the NCA to obtain a signal strength measurement, representative of the coverage situation in each district capital.

The results for the tested capitals show that none of the operators had 3G network coverage in four capitals, with MTN and Vodafone covering all others – though they both had 'fair' grade in two and three capitals respectively.

Tigo's coverage was rated as 'good' in two capitals; 'fair' in eight; 'poor' in five; and none in two others due to service outage on visit day.

Airtel achieved a 'good' rating in five capitals; 'fair' in seven; 'poor' in four; and none in one. Glo did not have coverage in any of the capitals tested.

The NCA says it has notified telcos of its findings with a directive to improve their coverage in some localities by July 2016 and in the four uncovered capitals by December 2016.

Airtel was sanctioned for not covering one capital and Tigo for two. Glo was given until December 2016 to cover all.

According to NCA figures (as at March), Glo Ghana has lost more than 300,000 subscribers in the first three months of this year.

MTN Ghana recorded an increase of 1.29% from February 2016's figure of 16,787,446 to 17,004,445 users to maintain its market share of 47.05%.

Glo's subscribers decreased from 1,103,301 to 1,048,635, representing a 4.95% decrease and a market share of 2.90%.

Rumours of a shutdown of operation surfaced after the telco reportedly closed several shops and decommissioned cell sites in the country in November.

However the company refuted the claims and said the closures were a part of its business strategy.

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