Internet companies face the risk of having their licences revoked because of yesterday’s outage.

Man expressing surprise

If you use the internet much, no doubt you were affected by yesterday’s huge internet outage. If you didn’t experience it like most if not all Telecel users then at least you somehow heard or read about it. Also, if your dealings were/are local, Telecel user or not, then you were still negatively impacted since most internet dependent services were unavailable as well, so were some of your friends anyway…


Why this massive internet outage? Techzim wrote about it here, but in summary the outage resulted from accidental breakages on both Liquid and TelOne’s main fibre lines. Not to say that Liquid and TelOne share their main fibre lines, no. Liquid’s main fibre line was cut by a tractor in South Africa while TelOne’s was cut locally by a city council worker in Kuwadzana.

So both these main fibre lines just happened to be cut on the same day and right about the same time… sounds dodgy doesn’t it???


Well, you not the only one who thinks that. Hon Supa Mandiwanzira, the ‘new’ minister of the new Information Communication Technology and Cyber Security ministry expressed the same sentiments, not in those exact words  but yea something like that.

Not only is the timing of these two incidents suspect but the fact that even the redundancy lines were affected as well, not to mention the reasons for the breakages. So for starters, at Liquid they say it’s a truck that cut the fibre connection, how deep or rather how shallow could a main fibre line be? Secondly, well, say that’s not a problem since we could just switch to a redundancy line but no, no, the redundancy line was also cut by the same truck because guess what, both the active and the redundancy lines are running in the same direction!

How? Maybe someone who knows better can explain it to me in the comments section, otherwise to me for now it all sounds like storing your laptop’s backup files in a folder within that very same laptop.

Anyway, Hon Supa wasn’t in the least pleased by this and clearly he is not to convinced with these reasons being given by these Internet Access Providers (IAP). In his own words according to the Newsday he said:

This should not happen, there should be redundancy plans in place and I wonder why these did not kick in. If we find that these companies were not truthful with us, we will revoke their licences.

Now we wait for the investigations around the issue and see what happens. But then again, if these two companies’ licences are revoked, then what? Seriously, then what? Remember, Liquid carries 81.4% market share of equipped international internet bandwidth while TelOne (second largest) takes up 15.1%… that’s like 96.5% of all our bandwidth… gone. 

See what monopoly or rather lack of competition does??? 

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8 thoughts on “Internet companies face the risk of having their licences revoked because of yesterday’s outage.

  1. The minister is over reacting. Yes investigations need to be made and remedies put in place not revoke license after years of investment. This is like scaring away other investors. Rather effect penalties and other such punitive actions but not to shut a running business. Lets keep sober minds as we walk into a new Zimbabwe

  2. The minister and his subordinates must have mechanisms to CHECK and VERIFY all claims of the existence of backup infrastructure. It’s not convincing to try and scare people whose tasks and responsibilities you don’t clearly understand yourself. This is hardly surprising – we have no national currency, elections were rigged, USD15 billion disappeared into thin air, diamond mines ran out of diamonds in record time, ZESA loans in millions were loaned to convicted fraudsters right before our eyes etc etc This is just another addition to our endless national litanies..

  3. minister vapinda mufilling station apa….and u want to try and attract investment when u can just revoke licences willy nilly like that.. he should know these things happen everywhere in the world but there better ways of punishing these companies like fines other than using emotions to run a is like saying we are taking the baking licence from Lobels coz they ddn’t provide bread today when they are obliged to coz there was no zesa…


  4. Minister this, minister that, get real. The service providers should be honest with it’s clientele and regulating bodies period. Institutions feel they can lie their way out of situations because there’s no consequences associated with their actions. Revocation may be too harsh, but organisations must be punished when they get out of line. Lack of punishment is very reason why the banking sector is full of rogue elements.

  5. voetsek so what was someone at potraz doing after all companies cannot be left to their devices they choose the cheapest option. though it did expose our isps. but in such a case the important read dedicates links are th ones that are given priority.

  6. How can one manage and control resources “under them” when they don’t have the requisite knowledge, experience or interest that is required to do so? When you delegate a task, that is not enough (unless abdication is enough for you), you need to have mechanisms to check that it has been carried out diligently and to satisfactory standards and that the outcome is of acceptable level. This is very difficult to understand, moreso, to implement if you lack the requisite knowledge, experience and zeal. Giving an order can never be enough to justify a salary….follow up and verify. No MBA is required for this basic logic in administration.

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