Why NetOne is failing to catch up with Econet


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A Member of Parliament has claimed that bureaucracy is slowing down development of the state-owned mobile network, NetOne. A decision which its major competitor- the privately-owned Econet- makes in a day takes NetOne at least a year, he claimed.

Mbizo MP Settlement Chikwinya said when a Parliamentary Committee asked NetOne why it was operating at a loss, it was told that when NetOne wants to purchase equipment to upgrade its system, it has to go through the State Procurement Board which sits on its papers for six months. When approved, the chief executive has to go to the minister for approval and this takes another six months.

“Econet sits today in the morning, they have a proposal and by evening their Chief Executive Officer has signed. So, they are already in front. Econet enjoyed the Eco-Cash platform way ahead of NetOne but this was technology available everywhere but they could not implement it. Then we want to come here again and say our parastatals are making a loss. Why? Because of bureaucratic systems which we have created and which prolong decisions when actually time is moving and the competition is actually catching up with them,” he said.

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Charles Rukuni
The Insider is a political and business bulletin about Zimbabwe, edited by Charles Rukuni. Founded in 1990, it was a printed 12-page subscription only newsletter until 2003 when Zimbabwe's hyper-inflation made it impossible to continue printing.

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