Altech wins R1,2bn Gauteng broadband tender

Altech Alcom Matomo has won a five-year deal to build a province-wide fibre-optic broadband network in Gauteng.


Altech Alcom Matomo has won a tender worth R1,2bn from the Gauteng provincial government to build a province-wide fibre-optic broadband network over the next five years.

Alcom Matomo, a subsidiary of technology and telecommunications group Altech, will be responsible for designing, building and operating the network over a five-year period. Thereafter, it will be transferred to the provincial government, which will take ownership of the network.

Services that will be offered include Internet access at speeds of 1Gbit/s and 10Gbit/s in both symmetrical and asymmetrical configurations, virtual private networking and voice telephony.

The network will provide core connectivity, with “ancillary projects” such as e-learning solutions to follow.

The network will connect Gauteng government buildings and community service centres. The province says fibre will be rolled to 20 “priority townships”.

Capacity on the fibre-optic network will be leased to both private- and public-sector organisations, Gauteng’s department of finance says in a statement.

“During January 2013, the provincial government’s ambitious broadband project was initiated with a tender invitation for the conceptualisation, construction and maintenance of a broadband network that would incorporate 1 600km of high-speed fibre optics,” the statement says.

“This initiative sought to provide network coverage to 95% of the Gauteng’s population; acquire and use information and communications technologies in a manner that leverages economies of scale; and provide cost-effective services, and ensure interoperability of its information systems with those of other government institutions.”

Finance MEC Mandla Nkomfe says in the statement that the network will ensure Gauteng residents “are able to access Internet effortlessly”.

The province quotes 2011 census data that shows that only 35,2% of Gauteng residents have access to the Internet.

“This situation is untenable and cannot be allowed to continue unchecked, especially because we live in the information age. Therefore, the only way for this government to transform this country is by providing our people with easy and affordable access to information, so that they can empower themselves,” says Nkomfe in the statement.

The province says the broadband network plan emanates from a comprehensive communications technology strategy and is intended to transform Gauteng into a “smart province and a connected global city region” by offering converged services, including video, voice and data, to provincial government buildings, public schools, hospitals and social welfare facilities.  — (c) 2014 NewsCentral Media

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  • disqus_3iFkBw06IY

    Who is bwired in this then? I thought they won the tender to build and manage the metro rings as well and provide the services above?

  • Tim Parle

    BWired run the network in the City of Johannesburg. This network is for the (entire) province of Gauteng. As to how much duplication there is between this Altech network, BWired, Dark Fibre Africa and other commercial players remains to be seen.

  • Mohammed Wadie

    I hope they dont plan to dig up the roads again

  • Davebee

    Sorry Mohammed they are going for a world record on this one…they are aiming to beat the world trenching record established in 1918 at the close of WW1.
    Sadly not a single meter of all of this fibre infrastructure that has been going on for the past 5 years has yet to enter a single business or home in Gauteng.
    At the end of my road there are no less than THREE entrenched cables and still no answer as to when we are going to be hooked up to the 21st century, AS WE WERE PROMISED.

  • Mitchbiggs

    Dont look for logic here – this is as blatant as Nkandla, but no one seems to be taking any notice.

    Bewired was for the corrupt Johannesburg civil servants and friends who are sharing the pot with Ericsson. The Gauteng projects is to be shared with Altech, the corrupt provincial guys and their friends. The irony is that all the cables and ducts are in place already and Gauteng could purchase capacity at 10% (yes 10%) of what they are going to spend on this project (but difficult to get kickbacks out of operating expenditure (as opposed to a long term build, operate transfer capital expenditure project). By the time the money has to be paid in five years time, the corrupt officlas will have taken their money and moved on (just like Bewired).
    Like Bewired, this fibre is unlkely to ever be used and I dont believe that the guys like Mr Mandla Nkomfe, who are commissioning this service have any intention of ever running a service. If they do get it running, do you know of anyone who would rather buy this service from a provincial or city council when they have numerous ISP’s, and large operators. to choose from?

  • Mitchbiggs

    One more thing – the one place where this money could be well spent is connecting into buildings and homes – the last mile. This is virgin territory, whereas the major routes are already overserved. If there was any sincere intention to improve internet access, this is where the money would be spent.

  • Wandile Tembe

    Hopefully the man on the streets will benefit from this.

  • Magwinya Wired

    I hope they remember to include townships in their rollout plans.

  • Andre Hoffmann

    Will SITA also stop this tender being implemented as they did with the Western Cape Broad Band plan? or is SITA involved in some way?

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