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MTN Rwanda Ramps Up Efforts to Support Communities In The Fight Against Covid-19

MTN Rwanda has announced that is has put in place additional interventions to support the Government’s efforts to communicate and raise awareness on precautionary measures to prevent and contain the spread of Covid-19.

Driven by the belief that everyone deserves the benefits of a modern connected life, MTN has rolled out a series of mobile connectivity, digital and mobile fintech solutions for its communities.

“MTN’s priority is keeping people connected during this period. We need to play our part in the alleviation of the economic, social and educational impact through the support of key institutions such as Health, ICT and Education,” said MTN CEO, Mitwa Ng’ambi.

The company, through its Foundation, has donated Frw 10 million to Rwanda Biomedical Centre to support them as they work tirelessly to stop the spread of the virus and has offered free MTN calls among health workers for a period of 90 days. MTN has also availed free media channel space (radio, TV, social media, SMS, Ring Back Tone, IVR platform) to promote the Ministry of Health’s sensitization messages.

In partnership with the Ministry of Education and Ministry of ICT and Innovation, MTN has made online access to Rwandan universities & school websites free to allow students to access in house learning materials. Students can access and at any time without consuming any data.

“We know how important it is to support continued learning for students during this period when institutions of learning are closed. To this end, we have zero-rated some educational websites to enable learners to access core curriculum materials and facilitate distance learning,” she added. 

In a bid to better serve customers in this period and beyond, MTN through its Digital platforms, recently announced that it has also increased the daily limit on Airtime Transfer (Me2U) from Rwf 3,000 to Rwf 6,000 as well as increased the airtime account balance limit from Rwf 500,000 to Rwf 1,000,000.

In cooperation with the Central Bank of Rwanda to drive cashless payments, MTN Rwanda recently waived fees on sending money to others, on all transactions from Banks to MoMo wallets and vice versa, as well as payments for goods and services using MoMoPay for a period of 90 days.

Social distancing amongst other precautionary interventions has undoubtedly increased the importance of communities staying digitally connected. In light of this, MTN has seen a spike in Internet traffic. 

Indicating how the company plans to deal with the upsurge in online traffic and network load, Mrs. Ng’ambi said, “We have noted an increase in internet traffic, almost doubling in residential areas due to the current situation. We have taken immediate actions to optimize and expand the existing network resources to accommodate the increase in demand over the coming weeks.”

A key priority for MTN is to ensure business continuity.  Services over this time will be even more critical, so priority is ensuring network continuity, availability of spares and equipment and the upgrading of capacity. 

MTN Rwanda has taken a series of precautionary measures to ensure continuity of services and the safety of its stakeholders including employees, customers, communities and suppliers against the outbreak.

All recommended and necessary prevention mechanisms have been put in place in all MTN touchpoints. A work-from-home plan for employees has been implemented in order to reduce the number of employees in offices and Service Centres at a given time and provisioning of hand sanitizers and temperature screening at all points. Franchisees, Agents and Suppliers/Service Providers have also been guided to ensure that they are taking the same precautionary and preventative measures. 

Customers can seek MTN services through the call centre by dialling 100, visit the Service Centres from 8am to 3pm or engage MTN agents that remain operational to ensure continued Mobile Money and airtime service delivery.

To curb the spread of Covid-19, Rwanda Utilities and Regulatory Authority (RURA) has put in place measures for Agents to adhere to when conducting transactions with customers. MTN Mobile Money and Airtime Agents must wear gloves and masks at all times and keep a 1 metre distance from customers. They are not allowed to work under the same umbrella/station nor exchange mobile devices. Agents who violate these set guidelines will be subject to penalties which may include closure of their businesses.

“MTN Rwanda’s top priorities are to keep our customers connected and our employees safe and healthy. We stand ready to leverage our core expertise, technology and infrastructure to support and align our response with the efforts of the Government to contain and mitigate the spread of Covid-19,” concluded Mrs. Ng’ambi.

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