Sierra Leone
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Africell turns sod, commences construction state-of-the- art data center

By Alhaji Haruna Sani

One of the leading mobile communication companies in Sierra Leone, Africell has officially turned sod and commenced construction of the state- of- the-art data center. The event took place yesterday 23rd May at 30F Lumley Beach Road, Freetown where the construction of the data center was ongoing.

In his opening statement, Shadi Gerjawi, Managing Director, Africell Sierra Leone said construction of the Data Centre was yet another great manifestation of Africell position of the evolving landscape of Africa’s Tele Communications Technology enabled services.

He said the State of the Art Centre will be the core and the heartbeat of Africell network in Sierra Leone. He said the multi-functional data center will be the first of its kind in Sierra Leone and the Mano River Union region.

“Firstly the state of the art centre will serve as a Disaster Recovery Centre for Africell by providing resilience and redundancy to the network for both voice and data.”

He maintained that section of the Data Centre will be dedicated to hosting third party infrastructure and data by providing a large storage capacity for disaster recovery and redundancy for Government, Non-governmental Organisations as well as for private entities requiring such services.

 He said the centre will be ready to host a second submarine cable for Sierra Leone in the near future.

“We will make additional submarine cable for Sierra Leone a necessary investment. Africell is making provision for this eventually in our data centres,” he maintained.

In his short keynote address, Chief Minister, Jacob Jusu Saffa said the construction of the new ultra-modern data centre is a significant strive to the technological advancement in Sierra Leone.

“I have been reliable informed that Africell has been in Sierra Leone since 2005, and that during the said period they have been engaging in a massive transformation and expansion of its tele-communication services in the country. The country can boast of over 80% mobile voice penetration though there is still room for improvement for mobile and data services,” he said.

He said to launch a data centre is a significant event, as it will provide substantial storage capacity of disaster occurring and redundancy for government data and all other agencies that require such service.

He said with network expansion going over 88% in populated areas in the country, Africell has proven to be a reliable partner in the development of not only technology but in other areas of development including it cooperate social responsibilities.

The Chief Minister climaxed his remark by officially and formally launching the commencement of the construction of Africell Data Centre.

Chairman of the National Tele-Communications Commission (NaTCOM),Joseph C. Blell  on behalf of NaTCOM commended Africell for continuing to live up to  it regulatory responsibility to provide the platform for mobile phone operators and subscribers, to provide the most critical services in the lives of Sierra Leoneans; that is mobile voice and data services.

“As Chairman of the Board and one who subscribes to all the networks and exemplary cooperate citizens, I am happy that Africell has today call us here to witness the grand breaking ceremony for the construction of a new data centre. This Data Centre will serve not only Africell subscribers but also the government and the citizens of the republic of Sierra Leone,” he stated.

He assured that NaTCOM will continue to support the major networks operators in bringing Sierra Leone at per with other nations, in the development of Information Technology Services.