Nigerian state-run telephone company cuts lines because of Y2K fear

Robbie Honerkamp robbie at
Thu Dec 30 19:39:49 UTC 1999

Thus spake Sean Donelan (sean at

> The Nigerian state-run telephone company NITEL cut service to 20,000
> lines serving private competitive telephone companies in the country
> due to Y2K fears.  The private companies say they are Y2K ready, and
> NITEL was just trying to disrupt the competition.
> Although many US networks plan to disconnect their own networks over
> New Year's, as far as I know, no US incumbant telephone company has
> plans to cut service to ISPs, CLECs or competitors due to Y2K fears.

As luck would have it, I've been setting up an ISP in Lagos this year.
For those of you who have RBOC voodoo dolls on your desk and go to bed
with migraines from dealing with your local telco I can assure you that
you're dealing with rank amateurs in frustration compared to NITEL. 

NITEL is cutting off service to private telcos for one reason: they can.
I'm surprised that we haven't heard more about this happening in other
developing countries.


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