Gateway Communications is offering customers cut off by the ongoing Nitel (Nigerian Telecommunications) strike – which has shut down access to the SAT-3 cable from Nigeria – satellite connectivity as a business continuity alternative.
The strike by employees of Nitel and its mobile communication arm, Mobile Telecom (Mtel), has left SAT-3 cable customers with no international connectivity, leaving businesses unable to trade, and adding to existing congestion on other networks.
Internet users and international corporate users have all been affected by the shutdown of Nigeria's main international fibre optic cable.
Nitel provides the major international link from Nigeria to the rest of Africa through the SAT-3 Cable infrastructure. Using satellite connectivity, Gateway has been able to ensure that both its corporate customers and Nigerian mobile operators are still able to connect their mobile or fixed networks to the rest of the world, including the Internet, thereby ensuring high availability and a high quality connection through Gateway's service level agreement (SLA).
"Businesses in South Africa looking to invest in or do business in Nigeria require consistency and quality of connectivity in order to operate effectively," says Mike van den Bergh, COO of Gateway Communications. "Reliability has been lacking over recent months, during which we have seen the Nitel link to SAT-3 down on a number of occasions.
"Fortunately Gateway, as the largest user of satellite capacity on the African continent, has been able to use its available capacity to recover our customers over satellite at a time like this. Our blended approach, using an optimal mix of cable, satellite and wireless infrastructure, has been and always will be fundamental to our ability to provide a highly reliable and truly pan-African communications infrastructure to meet the business needs of our customers."