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Vodacom is making a major investment to upgrade mobile connectivity across South Africa’s Mpumalanga province.
The company announced it will spend over R450 million ($27 million) improving its regional network over the next year. Efforts aim to expand coverage and capacity – including faster 5G – to more communities.
“By keeping customers connected to essential services, we are helping to empower businesses, individuals and underserved areas,” said Vodacom’s Monde Ngcukana.
A large chunk will go towards building 98 additional cell towers plus upgrading existing equipment. This reaches more users and provides backup during blackouts.
The upgrades have already boosted 3G and 4G population coverage by over 99% in Mpumalanga. Over 100 sites now offer next-gen 5G signals too.
“We are excited about enhancing experiences through increased high-speed, reliable connectivity,” Ngcukana said.
Affordability is also a focus, with discounted voice and data deals offered. This makes modern communication accessible despite economic pressures.
The company sponsors various local initiatives supporting education, digital literacy, gender equality and more. On Mandela Day, for example, Vodacom visited an early childhood development centre it backs.
By continuously improving infrastructure across urban and rural zones, Vodacom hopes to create new opportunities for all Mpumalanga residents. and invited 30 Grade 12 learners to participate in a digital skills development course, while Nkangala County and Gert Sibande County visited Run’s Future Kids ECD centre and Moolman Primary School to revitalise and replant the gardens.
The region also donated 130 hygiene packages to the Greater Rape Intervention Programme, an organisation that supports survivors of gender-based violence (GBV) in Mpumalanga and executed an internal food drive for Children in Distress that directly benefited 230 individuals.
To foster digital inclusion and break gender stereotypes, Vodacom Mpumalanga hosted a #Code Like a Girl boot camp for 36 schoolgirls from Sofunda Secondary School and Mkhulu Secondary School in Middelburg. Participants learn coding and other digital skills while developing confidence to pursue careers in the traditionally male-dominated fields of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM).
“At Vodacom, we believe in using our capabilities to drive change and address societal concerns. Through our various projects, initiatives, investments, and strategic partnerships with both the public and the private sector, we aim to connect everyone for a better future,” concludes Ngcukana.