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What next as Elon Musk’s Twitter wind sweeps off many staff in Ghana

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A lot has been unraveling since Elon Musk’s take-over of the microblogging website, Twitter last week. In the latest series of changes with Twitter, reports of massive staff lay off have emerged.

Until last week when Musk’s reign began, the staff of the Twitter company in the company’s Ghana, Accra office had been working remotely since its announcement that it would open its first African office in Ghana in April 2021.

Twitter laid off thousands of employees across the company on Friday, including staff in India and Africa.

A report by CNN says Musk’s Twitter laid off nearly all the employees in its only African office just four days after it opened in the Ghanaian capital Accra, multiple sources with knowledge of the situation.

An anonymous laid-off staff lamenting his treatment remarked “It’s very insulting.”

“From the mail to the lack of next steps to the tone of the letter. Just everything. Ridiculously insulting,” a staff member lamented.

The microblogging platform has had a not-too-good relationship with Africa lately. Recall that from 5 June 2021 to 13 January 2022, the government of Nigeria officially banned and restricted the micro-blogging site, Twitter from operating in the country.

Musk had maintained that “the reason he acquired Twitter is that it is important to the future of civilization to have a common digital town square, where a wide range of beliefs can be debated in a healthy manner, without resorting to violence.

But the Tesla CEO has also indicated that a verified account on Twitter in the future could cost $8 a month, despite facing a user backlash over proposals to charge for the feature.

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Tanzanian retail-tech startup, Ramani, secures $32m funding

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Tanzania’s retail-tech startup, Ramani, has successfully secured $32 million Serie A funding to enable it push forward in building its cloud network of micro-distribution centres across Africa, the company’s cofounder, Iain Usiri, said on Saturday.

Founded in 2019 by Usiri, Calvin Usiri and Kibet Martin, “Ramani’s focus is on fixing fragmented consumer goods supply chains that traditionally suffer from lack of data visibility and are burdened by limited access to financial services,” the company profile reads.

“To address these challenges, Ramani provides tech-enabled inventory management systems, procurement, and point of sale software to digitise the processes of micro-distribution centres (MDCs), helping them gain real-time sales insights and inventory visibility.

“Ramani is then also able to leverage this data to offer up inventory with delayed payment terms, enabling them to scale,” it said.

Early this year, the company acquired a lending license from the Central Bank of Tanzania to scale their customers further, and with the new seed funding, is expected to expand its offering beyond the eastern African country.

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MTN launches 5G network in Zambia

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Pan-African mobile operator, MTN, has officially launched its 5G network in Zambia, after beginning a test run in January, making the country the third in Africa after previous launches South Africa in June 2020 and in Nigeria in September 2022.

The 5G services which will run commercially in six Zambian cities, according to MTN Group’s President and CEO, Ralph Mupita, will help transform businesses and livelihoods in the southern African nation.

“5G can transform business and livelihoods beyond simple connectivity, with the potential to unlock many new use cases. In Zambia, we see great opportunities across many sectors, and in the mining industry in particular,” Mupita said at the launch on Friday.

MTN Zambia CEO, Bart Hofker, said the 5G services had been activated to cover about 65% of the population in the cities of Lusaka, Kitwe and Ndola, and parts of Chingola, Solwezi and Kalumbila, which translates into about 15% of the overall population of the country.

“We plan to reach 100% 5G coverage in Lusaka, Kitwe and Ndola by the middle of 2023, while gradually expanding the 5G network to other locations,” Hofker said.

MTN’s 5G is a fifth-generation mobile network technology which offers faster speeds, lower latency, better security and stability and the ability to handle high-volume connections and mobile data. It can connect virtually everything, including machines, vehicles and robots,” he added.

The launching of the network in Lusaka, the country’s capital, was witnessed by Zambian President, Hakainde Hichilema, along with top government ministers and representatives of the telecoms regulator and the Central Bank governor

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