Banks, Telecoms in Nigeria, Ghana, South Africa 9 Other African Countries Affected By Massive Undersea Cable Cuts



Eleven countries across West, East and Southern Africa are currently suffering internet disruptions due to the breach of series of undersea cables across the Red Sea and parts of the Atlantic Ocean.


Countries including Nigeria, South Africa, Liberia, Benin, Ghana and Burkina Faso are seriously affected by the disruptions. Others are, Gambia, Guinea, Ivory Coast, Niger, Namibia, Lesotho and South Africa.


It is now confirmed that four major operators had their undersea cables compromised.

Microsoft in a statement on Thursday told its South African customers that, “We have determined that multiple fibre cables on the West Coast of Africa — WACS, MainOne, SAT3, ACE — have been impacted which reduced total capacity supporting our regions in South Africa.”


Nigeria’s MainOne also confirmed in a statement that its cables were affected by the breach which cause has not been conclusively determined.


The statement reads:

“Earlier today, Thursday, March 14, 2024, we experienced a fault on the MainOne network. Based on preliminary findings, the fault resulted from an incident on our submarine cable system, offshore the coast of West Africa, that has also affected other cable systems and is disrupting international connectivity and Internet services to countries across West Africa.

“We are working with cable systems that are not affected by this incident or previous outages to secure restoration capacity and our technical team is working assiduously to begin the restoration of services, subject to availability of capacity and service configuration specifics. We will also provide incremental updates on the root cause and efforts to repair the submarine cable as soon as those details become available.

“We want to assure our customers that all hands are fully on deck to repair the cable and restore all services and the MainOne quality that you have come to rely on.“We thank you for your patience and understanding.

The breach has affected not just telecommunications, but also financial institutions across the countries. In Nigeria several bank customers were unable perform transaction on their mobile bank apps, this is in addition to major disruption in telephone and internet services.

Reports from internet analysis firms like NetBlocks, Kentik, and Cloudflare, indicate that the cut was widespread even beyond the 12 countries  in Sub-Sahara Africa.

There is also fears that  the situation may worsen due to similar ongoing cable cuts in the Red Sea that has affected, EIG, Seacom, AAE-1 which has also seriously impacyed internet connectivity on the East Coast of Africa. This means that the entire African continent may face internet blackout if the breaches are not speedily resolved.

There have been controversies over the cause of the cable cuts with Israeli government accusing Houthi rebels supported by Iran of being responsible for the cuts. The Rebels have since vehemently denied the allegations.

However, all the affected companies  have declared that services were being migrated to cables that were not affected while they have already commenced efforts at repairing the damaged cables.

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