South Africa’s telecom company MTN spends $3.7 million to support communities battered by COVID-19 in Africa and Middle East

In a statement sent to TODAY NEWS AFRICA in Washington D.C., the South African telecommunication giant said the money would go to communities across Africa and the Middle East where it operates.

The money is spent on the unemployed, small and large businesses and the procurement of essential goods such as food and medicine.

“Through these efforts and our support for Government Relief Funds, we have invested R70 million ($3.7 million) towards ensuring communities are supported,” the company said.

MTN has supported the provision of 130 500 Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs) and 10 000 virus testing kits. Through the donation of food packs and the provision of water points, approximately 46 000 people have access to vital food and water during the COVID-19 lockdowns.

“MTN, as a leading brand in the markets in which we operate, believes that we have a  key role to play in assisting to minimise the likelihood of transmission and its impact on society. We are incredibly  proud of the level of resilience that the communities have demonstrated across our operations as they fight against the challenges that COVID-19 brings,” said Nompilo Morafo, Group Executive Corporate Affairs.

“Africa and the Middle East have always been cultures defined by ingenuity, entrepreneurship, and positivity. We believe the more we can do to address our communities’ essential needs, the more time they can use to focus on this resilience and innovation potential that will be at the heart of social and economic recovery.

“Since COVID-19 has transformed the world we live in there have been countless inspiring stories of ingenuity as people find new ways to operate and contribute to the recovery. African laboratories and tech companies have developed rapid testing kits, mobile tracking apps and medical drones. In some countries radio, web solutions and apps are delivering education to students who would otherwise be cut off from school and across the continent businesses are redesigning their production lines to manufacture much needed ventilators, sanitizers and PPEs. As we rebuild and reshape our economies, innovation will be the game changer.

“We are committed to leveraging our core capabilities to enable this process, underpinned by our core belief that everyone deserves the benefits of a modern, connected life and that connectivity can play a unifying role.

“The COVID-19 pandemic as a global health and societal emergency requires effective and immediate action by governments, individuals and businesses. It is critical that we collectively respond with one unified voice and take the necessary measures to make a meaningful contribution to society,” Morafo added.

Chief White House Correspondent for

Simon Ateba is Chief White House Correspondent for Today News Africa. Simon covers President Joe Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris, the U.S. government, the United Nations, the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and other financial and international institutions in Washington D.C. and New York City.

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