The government of Zimbabwe has completed the acquisition of Telecel shares from Vimplecom and Global Telecom.

The government said in July 2015 that it had the agreement of VimpelCom to take over Telecel, but it was unable to provide the agreed $40 million.

In a communique published by TechZim, the CEO, Angeline Vere stated that the management will continue to focus on ensuring that the organisation functions smoothly in the transition.

“It is very much business as usual and we should all remain hardworking and committed to serving our customers to the highest Telecel standards.”

With the conclusion of this deal, Telecel is now owned by ZARNet, the Zimbabwe Academic and Research Network, an internet service provider that is also wholly owned by the government of Zimbabwe through the Ministry of Information Communication Technology, Postal and Courier Services.

This also means that the government of Zimbabwe owns two of the three mobile operators in the country – Telecel and NetOne. The third is owned by Econet Wireless Group, a private entity.

There is now every likelihood that the country will now go ahead with the plan to force all mobile operators in the country to share telecoms infrastructure. The regulatory body,Postal and Telecommunications Authority of Zimbabwe (POTRAZ), had issued a statement in November that it “shall exercise licensing and regulatory powers in respect of infrastructure sharing”, saying that plans could cut capital expenditure by up to 60% and lead to savings passed on to consumers.