Kenya’s mobile telecommunications company Safaricom says it has pulled out its staff out of Ethiopia following the ongoing conflict in the country.

Chief Executive Officer Peter Ndegwa says the company is in the process of setting up its operations ahead of the launch next year.

He expressed fear that the ongoing crisis is likely to affect its profits as it had projected breaking even by 2026.

Former Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo is in Ethiopia on behalf of the African Union to try to facilitate talks:

In May this year, a Safaricom-led consortium that includes its parent firms Britain’s Vodafone and South Africa’s Vodacom, British development finance agency CDC Group and Japan’s Sumitomo Corporation was awarded a licence to set up operations in the country.

Safaricom’s entry into Ethiopia means the end of the Ethiopian government’s monopoly in the telecoms sector.

Ethiopia’s telecoms market has until now remained closed and under the control of the state-owned Ethio-telecom.

The telco plans to invest between $1.5 billion to $2 billion.

The company says its returns may be affected by the current political crisis in the country.

Last week, the company pulled out its staff from the country following rising tensions in the conflict between the rebel group the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) and the government.

Ethiopia declares a 6-month state of emergency: Dr. Awol Allo