Africell aims to make phones affordable to all

FREETOWN, SIERRA LEONE- In a bid to make mobile phones more accessible to Gambians, Africell has launched the “Phone for every Gambian.”

Africell, which began operations in 2001 as Gambia’s second GSM (Global System for Mobile Communications) operator, is running the promotion in conjunction with Reliance Financial Service, the country’s fifth non-bank financial institution.

“We know that the only barrier that prevents most Gambians from having universal access to telecommunication is financial deficiency,” said Africell Marketing/Sales Manager Papa Leigh, noting the company’s primary goal of providing affordable GSM service.

Under the program, subscribers will be able to pay for a new Nokia 1110 in installments. A 10-month payment plan requires a fixed deposit of 100 dalasi (US$4.84), with equal payments for the remaining nine months, while a five-month payment plan requires a fixed deposit of 160 dalasi, with equal payments for the remaining four months.

The phone comes with an Africell SIM (Subscriber Identity Module) and a monthly free credit allowance arrangement: For each monthly payment, those on the nine-month payment plant will receive a 50 dalasi Africell-to-Africell call credit, and those on the five-month payment plan will receive a credit worth 80 dalasi.

An identification document such as a passport or driver’s license must be produced to benefit from the offer.

Gambia, with a population of about 1.7 million, is the smallest country on the continent — about 10,380 sq. km. –and is surrounded by Senegal on all sides except the west, where it meets the Atlantic Ocean.

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