In These New Times

A new paradigm for a post-imperial world

Danger In Mobile PhoneCommunication Towers

Posted by smeddum on October 6, 2009

Danger In Mobile PhoneCommunication Towers
EDITOR
Mmegi online

5/10/09

Are we being denied information by the cell phone companies or the telecommunications industry regulator regarding the dangers of communication towers?

The towers are mushrooming everywhere in Botswana. They have become a source of income for many people who are lucky enough to provide land for the erection of the towers. However, studies have shown that even at low levels, the radiation from the towers can damage cell tissue and DNA. The radiation has been linked to brain tumours, cancer, suppressed immune function, depression, miscarriage, Alzheimer’s disease and serious illnesses.

The studies indicate that children are at the greatest risk from the radiation due to their thinner skulls and rapid rate of growth. Also at greater risk are the elderly, the frail and pregnant women.

Doctors from the United Kingdom have issued warnings urging children under 16 not to use cell phones to reduce their exposure to Radio Frequency (RF) radiation. However, the cell phone industry in Botswana has been absolutely silent as to whether their towers pose any threat to human health. But Bakgatla in Mochudi have spilled the beans. Last weekend, they learnt from their dikgosi that the communication towers emit radiation capable of causing diseases.

We also learn that some institutions such as Maruapula Secondary School forced a cell phone company to remove a tower because it presented a serious health hazard.

As a developing country, Botswana is faced with serious challenges such as tackling the ramifications that come with the cell phone technology. In fact everyone has been so silent about the impact of the cell phone technology in Botswana as if there is nothing to worry about.

We welcome Bakgatla’s stance regarding the towers. In fact they are arguing that the towers should not be erected near human settlements or in the middle of villages and towns due to their proven danger to health.

In India, an August 2009 report showed that cell phone towers might be problematic for bees. According to their new study, a rapid drop in the bee population in Kerala, India is the result of recently installed cell phone towers, and could cause a complete collapse of bee populations within 10 years. An experiment conducted in Kerala showed that as mobile phone companies installed towers to expand their network, the bee population shrank.

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