MTN Uganda has today boosted the Uganda Communications Universal Service and Access Fund with UGX 36 billion for the year 2023 towards extending communications services to the underserved and unserved areas.
All licensed telecom operator’s telecom in the country are required to pay a statutory 2% levy on their annual gross revenues to the Fund administered by Uganda Communications Commission. Established in 2003, the Fund then known as the Rural Communications Development Fund (RCDF) addresses issues of connectivity, access, affordability and equity of ICT services to the population.
Speaking during the handover ceremony at the UCC offices in Kampala, MTN Uganda Chief Executive Officer, Sylvia Mulinge, said they are excited as a telco to contribute to the Fund because it will help extend ICT services in unserved and underserved areas.
“We at MTN Uganda are glad that we are contributing to the Universal Service and Access Fund that will not only help deepen digital services but also boost various sectors of the economy like education, agriculture and health among others,” she said.
“We believe that our support towards this Fund will also help us achieve our ambition of ensuring that everyone enjoys the benefits of a modern connected life.” Ms Mulinge said MTN Uganda remains committed to developing the ICT sector in partnership with the government to harness the power of technology and unleash the country’s true potential fostering economic growth.
According to the Uganda Communications Commission (UCC) Q2 2022 market performance report, the total number of connected mobile phone devices increased from 35 million in April to 36.1 million in June 2022.
The total number of broadband connections stood at 23.7 million subscriptions as digital financial services had a total of 40.7 million during the same period. In her remarks, UCC Executive Director, Eng. Irene Kaggwa, congratulated MTN Uganda for the contribution as it will go a long way in ensuring that the country achieves digital inclusion as envisioned in the Digital Vision 2040.
She said Uganda Communications Universal Service and Access Fund has over the years enabled government to set up computer labs in about 1300 secondary schools and given out about 4,000 mobile phones devices to the vulnerable households.
MTN Uganda has over the years extended supported government in deepening digital skills, especially among the youth, with the provision of more than 42 ICT labs in various educational institutions including six in technical institutes like Amelo Technical Institute located in Adjuman District, St. Simon Peter’s Vocational Training Centre in Hoima District, and St. Daniel Comboni Polytechnic in Moroto District to meet the ever-evolving work environment.