This past weekend I was irritated and frustrated. It's become a part of everyday South African life for 13 years that we have what is called "load-shedding," which is a fancy word for scheduled electricity blackouts due to incompetence and lack of maintenance of electricity infrastructure. My irritation and frustration were that for twice in a single week, we had the scheduled 4 and a half hours of load-shedding but this would twice extend to nine hours without any notice.
So, I took to Twitter to vent and express my frustration.
It didn't take long after my tweet that people from Kenya and Nigeria would express the same sentiments while those in South Africa concurred. Meanwhile, many others expressed that the situation is similar across different countries in Africa.
Although my tweet is an exaggeration (i.e. needing to be your own government), the frustration and fact that more services that are supposed to be delivered by governments are being privatized.
Which begs to ask, if more and more services are being delivered by private companies mainly because the government is failing to deliver them, what are African governments doing with taxes?
Doesn't this privatization of public services also threaten the sovereignty of African countries?
The privatization of Africa is indeed worrying. Here are today's other top stories.
📡 Tizeti, a startup with solar-powered Wi-Fi towers in Nigeria, is set to offer affordable internet access in Nigeria's Edo State starting from 1 April 2021. The company with solar-powered Wi-Fi towers will be rolling out its 4G LTE network in Edo State starting in Benin City. At $8/month for the people in Edo, it is quite reasonable. Link
📲 One of the reasons why the digital divide exists and doesn't seem to be getting better is the cost of internet access. One of the reasons internet access is costly is because of tax. A study carried out in the first quarter of 2020 found that the price of 1GB of mobile data in Somalia is $ 0.50, way much cheaper than most African countries, and among the cheapest rates for mobile data in the world. The cost in Kenya is $ 1.05. Link
👮 Jay Y. Lee, the vice-chairman of Samsung electronics is back in jail. He was arrested over bribery charges. This is after he was arrested in 2017 and successfully appealed the arrest. Now, that appeal has been overturned. Link
🎨 Talking of how useful Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies are in our day to day lives, there is a relatively new phenomenon known as cryptoart. Here is all you need to know about it. Link
The failure by African governments to deliver public services is leading to most of these services being privatized. As a result, this is potentially threatening the sovereignty of some African countries. (Tweet this | Share on WhatsApp)
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