Zimbabwe’s Econet suspends internet services on government order

Econet Wireless logo
Econet Wireless logo

Econet Wireless Zimbabwe, the country’s largest mobile operator, said on Wednesday its internet services had been cut off following an order from the government amid deadly protests in the country.

Econet said in a text message to customers in Harare, “We are obliged to act when directed to do so and the matter is beyond our control.”

The firm added that all networks and providers had suspended their services.

Three people, including a police officer, died during Monday’s demonstrations in the capital and second city Bulawayo, which were called by the main labour union to protest a sharp rise in the price of fuel and economic hardship.

Zimbabweans accuse the president, Emmerson Mnangagwa, of failing to live up to pre-election pledges to kick-start growth.

The residents said their purchasing power had been eroded by hyper-inflation, and using force to crush dissent like his predecessor, Robert Mugabe.

Internet services were cut by mid-morning on Tuesday, leaving many people without access to social media platforms.

There is the accusation that the government wanted to prevent images of its heavy handedness from being broadcast around the world.

Mr Mnangagwa has promised a clean break from 37-year rule of Mugabe, who was forced out in a de facto coup in November 2017.


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