MTN Rwanda and the GSMA announced their strategic partnership during the MWC Africa conference hosted in Kigali, Rwanda from 17-19 October 2023.
This collaboration falls under the GSMA’s “WeCare” campaign and aims to bridge the usage gap and accelerate digital literacy in Rwanda, fostering a digitally inclusive society.
According to the GSMA State of Mobile Internet Connectivity Report 2023, the mobile internet usage gap in Sub-Saharan Africa is 69%.
The primary barriers preventing this population from accessing the internet and benefiting from mobile technology are affordability, particularly of internet-enabled devices, and lack of literacy and skills. The partnership focuses on addressing these key challenges.
The initiative will implement a series of digital literacy programs designed to equip Rwandans with essential skills to navigate the digital landscape effectively. This includes comprehensive training on fundamental digital skills, covering internet usage, social media engagement, and mobile application utilization. MTN’s Data Smart training has already reached 1.4 million people in Rwanda, and the aim is to further expand this reach.
To overcome the affordability barrier, the partnership will facilitate access to smartphones through Macye Macye, MTN’s innovative installment payment plan, which includes complimentary data, voice, and SMS bundles. Since its launch in 2022, over 100,000 devices have been purchased by customers in Rwanda.
Saint Hilary Doe-Tamakloe, MTN Rwanda Chief Consumer and Digital Officer, stated, “MTN Rwanda is steadfastly committed to bridging the digital divide and ensuring that all Rwandans have the opportunity to participate in the digital economy. Our partnership with the GSMA will amplify our reach, enabling us to empower more individuals with essential digital skills training and awareness campaigns, fostering their success in the digital age.”
Angela Wamola, Head of Sub-Saharan Africa at GSMA, expressed her enthusiasm, stating, “The GSMA is thrilled to partner with MTN Rwanda to promote digital literacy and inclusion in Rwanda. The ‘WeCare’ campaign serves as a powerful platform for mobile operators to make a positive impact in their communities, and we are confident that this collaboration will significantly contribute to the achievement of the ‘85% digital literate penetration of the adult population’ target as outlined in the Rwanda National Broadband Policy and Strategy.”
This partnership reaffirms the shared commitment of MTN Rwanda and the GSMA to creating a digitally inclusive society where everyone has the opportunity to harness the power of technology to enhance their lives.