Seacom this week admitted that its submarine fibre cable that landed on the east Africa coast in July 2009, “has had challenges since inception”. The statement was made by Seacom’s head of business development, Aidan Baigriecable.
The admission comes as Seacom considers buying backup undersea fibre capacity from other submarine fibre cable operators.
Zimbabwe currently uses some of Seacom’s bandwidth through providers, Econet and Africom. Econet connected to the Seacom cable in December last year through Zimbabwe’s Beitbridge border with South Africa. Africom has connected Seacom through Mozambican internet provider, TDM, at the Mutare border with Mozambique.
The Seacom cable has been riddled by breakages especially between Egypt and Europe. The cable operator doesn’t have its own cable live in this section and relies on a partner, Sea-Me-We-4 for connectivity to Europe. The reliability of the Sea-Me-We-4 has been less than satisfactory for Seacom’s downstream clients since launch.
Seacom yesterday said that its own cable running the Egypt route was ready to go live, but is currently lying idle owing to instability issues in Egypt following the unrest.