Bonheur Malenga, a Congolese university student, found himself facing a dilemma one day last month about whether to purchase online data.
“As I was hungry, I didn’t know if I should buy food or get a 24-hour internet bundle,” he told the BBC.
The 27-year-old, who is studying engineering, relies on his parents for financial support – but has been spending more than usual as he has been doing research online for his final-year dissertation.
He lives in Kinshasa, capital of the Democratic Republic of Congo, where 26% of average income to spent getting online using mobiles – the easiest way to access the internet here.
“I told myself that staying hungry for a day and a night wouldn’t kill me. So, I just bought the internet bundle and slept on an empty stomach,” he said.
Mr Malenga says many of his friends face the same dilemma.
DR Congo is classed as the most expensive country to get online in the world, according to the 2019 Affordability Report from the Alliance for Affordable Internet.
The organisation determines affordable internet as paying 2% or less of your average monthly income for 1GB of mobile broadband data.
Source: BBC Africa