Connecting Africa is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them. Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 3099067.


Kenya's Safaricom looks to Huawei for 5G

Article Image
Kenyan operator Safaricom is considering using Huawei equipment for its 5G network rollout this year and is not put off by US efforts to steer countries away from the Chinese manufacturer.

Safaricom's interim CEO, Michael Joseph, is quoted by Reuters saying the telco will use Huawei for 5G.

"What will we do in terms of the American statements about not using Huawei? We don't have that situation in Africa," he added.

Joseph told Reuters that Safaricom, however, would follow guidelines from its two main shareholders, South Africa's Vodacom and the UK's Vodafone.

Safaricom's interim CEO, Michael Joseph
Safaricom's interim CEO, Michael Joseph

The US has been attempting to get its allies and other countries to not use Huawei, citing alleged security concerns. In May 2019 Huawei was added to the US "Entity List" that has restricted the ability of US companies, including Android parent Google and multiple networking component manufacturers, to trade with the Chinese vendor without a special license.

However, African nations have so far not been swayed by the US and remain open to doing business with Huawei. (See African Operators, Governments Show Faith in Huawei.)

Safaricom has been running trials for its 5G network but no major rollout or official announcement has happened yet. Safaricom remains Kenya's leading mobile operator with about 33 million customers.

Joseph stepped in as interim CEO in July 2019 after the death of long-serving CEO Bob Collymore, but will hand over the job to Peter Ndegwa on April 1. (See Safaricom Announces New CEO After Collymore's Passing , Michael Joseph Returns to Lead Safaricom , and Bob Collymore Loses His Battle With Cancer.)

— The Staff, Connecting Africa

Innovation hub


Hot startup of the month: SA's Snode

This month's hot startup is South African company Snode, which is applying a data-driven approach to cybersecurity.


Twitter announces first African office in Ghana, begins hiring

Twitter has announced it is planning to open an office in Accra, the Ghanaian capital – the first in Africa for the social media giant.

More Innovation hub

Guest Perspectives


Omdia View: April 2021

By Omdia Analysts

This month, Omdia's analysts provide context around Ethiopia's spectrum licensing process, Millicom's plans to exit Tanzania and Ghana, and Airtel Africa's successful capital raise.


Factors influencing fintech adoption in Nigeria

By Yusuf Opeyemi Akinwale and Adam Konto Kyari

This article is a collaboration with the African Journal of Science, Technology, Innovation and Development and explores the factors impacting the adoption of financial services technology in Lagos, Nigeria.

More Guest Perspectives

Flash poll

All polls

AfricaCom perspectives


Digital inclusion as a catalyst for economic empowerment: Mastercard's Imelda Ngunzu

Mastercard's Imelda Ngunzu talks to Connecting Africa about how digital payment solutions and mobile money are transforming the lives of small business owners, women and marginalized groups in East Africa.


Accelerating women in STEM: In conversation with GirlCode's Tinyiko Simbine

GirlCode co-founder and CFO Tinyiko Simbine talks about why it's important to help girls and young women excel in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fields.


How Poa Internet is unlocking meaningful connectivity in East Africa

Poa Internet's CEO Andy Halsall shares his views on what it takes to develop last-mile connectivity and get Africans online in a meaningful way.

More AfricaCom perspectives

Latest video

More videos

Upcoming events

More Upcoming events

Partner perspectives

The moving target that is telecoms fraud
By Clémentine Fournier, Regional VP Sales, Africa, BICS

How mobile operators in Africa can address signalling threats and secure the network
By Katia Gonzalez, Head of Fraud and Security at BICS

SD-WAN and satellite – how MNOs and telcos can enjoy the best of both worlds
By Ofer Asif, SVP BizDev, marketing and strategy at Spacecom

All Partner Perspectives

Sponsored video

More videos

Like us on Facebook

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign Up