Zimbabwe licences fourth mobile phone operator

HARARE – In a bizarre twist Zimbabwe has licensed a fourth company to offer mobile phone services in the country, a national telecommunication agency said Tuesday.

The Postal and Telecommunications Regulatory Authority of Zimbabwe (Potraz) said the state-owned phone company, Tel-One, had been granted the licence to set up a mobile phone division.

Potraz directror, Alfred Marisa, said the agency expected Tel-One to soon roll-out its network nationwide, and help increase tele-density in the country.

It will become the second state-owned mobile phone operator after Net-One, the country’s oldest. The other two are privately owned.

The government has been trying to woo continental operator, MTN, to partner cash-strapped Net-One to expand its services in the country.

The deal appears to have collapsed over pricing and regulatory controls