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Business News of Wednesday, 28 November 2007

Source: GNA

MTN asked to help improve conditions of rural communities

Tamale, Nov. 28, GNA - Alhaji Mustapha Ali Idris, Northern Regional Minister, has appealed to management of MTN, a telecommunication service provider, to embark on an aggressive programme to help alleviate the socio-economic problems of the rural communities in the three northern regions.

He said there was the need, for instance, for MTN to supplement the efforts of government and development partners to provide potable water to guinea worm endemic communities to help eradicate the disease. Alhaji Idris made the appeal during the Northern Regional launch of the "MTN Ghana Foundation" in Tamale on Tuesday. The Foundation is to work closely with the communities to improve their quality of life. Its priority is to contribute to the economic prosperity and sustainable socio-economic development in the communities in the 21 countries in Africa and the Middle East that the Network is operating in.

Alhaji Idris said the Northern Region was saddled with poverty, disease and conflicts that could be overcome with pragmatic programmes. He appealed to MTN to extend its network to Bunkpurugu/Yunyoo District.

Mr. Brett Goschen, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of MTN, said the management was conscious of its social responsibility to the people and as such, it would sustain the network as the leading telecommunications company in Africa and the Middle East.

He said it was MTN's corporate responsibility to contribute to the improvement of the lives of the people in their operational areas. Mr. Goschen expressed the hope that in partnership and collaboration with governments, community leaders and other identifiable groups, the dream of MTN would become a reality in Ghana. Mrs. Nabilla Williams, a member of the Board of Directors of MTN, said it made sense all over the world for business entities to be sensitive to the basic needs of the communities in which they operated. To this end, she said, MTN was setting aside one per cent of its profit after tax to take care of such activities and assured Ghanaians of improved network services.