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MTN Reports Fiber Cuts in Eastern Nigeria on Construction Work

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Jan. 31 (Bloomberg) -- MTN Group Ltd.’s Nigerian unit said it’s experiencing “serious” fiber-cable cuts in the eastern part of the West African nation that are probably caused by road construction work.

South Africa-based MTN, which is Nigeria’s biggest mobile-phone operator, has doubled surveillance of the affected areas, Akinwale Goodluck, a company spokesman, said today in an e-mailed statement. MTN suffers more than 70 cuts a month in Africa’s biggest oil producer due to vandalism, sabotage and criminal activities, he said.

“In addition, our fiber maintenance engineers are working round-the-clock to repair damage as soon as it is detected,” said Goodluck. “We are working towards an improved experience on the network very soon.”

The nation’s telecommunications regulator fined Nigeria’s four main phone companies including MTN a combined 1.17 billion naira ($7.4 million) in May for failing to meet minimum service standards.

Service disruptions were also caused by attacks last year in the north by the Islamist militant group Boko Haram, which said it’s targeting telecommunications companies because they’re helping the authorities to track them.

To contact the reporter on this story: Chris Kay in Abuja at ckay5@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Vernon Wessels at vwessels@bloomberg.net

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