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  A dozen countries across Africa, including Nigeria, found themselves grappling with a major internet outage on Thursday, 14th of March 2024, following reports of failures in multiple undersea telecommunication cables, as confirmed by network operators and internet watch groups.
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Thursday’s outage suggests a more significant issue at hand, according to Isik Mater, the director of research at NetBlocks, an organization dedicated to documenting internet disruptions globally. “Today’s disruption points to something larger, and this is amongst the most severe,” Mater remarked, underscoring the gravity of the situation. NetBlocks further elaborated on the nature of the disruption, indicating a significant impact on international transits, with the disruptions likely occurring at or near the subsea network cable landing points. This revelation sheds light on the critical role these undersea cables play in facilitating international data transmission across the continent. Reports from various sources, including the Washington Post, identified several key undersea cables affected by Thursday’s outage. Among them were the West Africa Cable System (WACS), the Africa Coast to Europe (ACE), SAT-3, and MainOne. These cables serve as vital conduits for internet connectivity between Africa and other regions, particularly Europe.
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The outage underscores the vulnerability of Africa’s digital infrastructure and the urgent need for robust solutions to address such disruptions. As the continent increasingly relies on digital technologies for communication, commerce, and social interaction, ensuring the resilience and reliability of its internet connectivity becomes paramount. Efforts to repair the damaged undersea cables and restore connectivity are underway, but the incident serves as a stark reminder of the challenges facing Africa’s digital development. It highlights the importance of investing in infrastructure resilience, redundancy, and alternative connectivity solutions to mitigate the impact of future disruptions.
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In the face of this outage, stakeholders, including governments, telecommunications providers, and international organizations, must collaborate to strengthen Africa’s digital infrastructure and ensure uninterrupted access to the internet, a vital resource for socioeconomic development and global connectivity.
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This article was first published on 15th March 2024


I am a poet. I am a moderate thinker who abhors radicalism on every front and believes that most things are relative. I am a social and political critic. I love writing, reading and international politics.

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