ICASA facing legal challenges from MTN, Vodacom

12 Feb 2014

Nomvuyiso Batyi, a representative of South African telecoms watchdog ICASA, has confirmed that mobile operator MTN South Africa has sent a letter to the watchdog demanding the ‘immediate removal of recently published regulations’, which include a 50% cut in mobile termination rates (MTRs), TechCentral reports. According to the article, Batyi said: ‘We expect Vodacom will join the action by MTN, so we are prepared for it. We have [hired] a very senior [legal] counsel … We did instruct [our legal team] to respond … and say we are not removing anything. We will see them in court if they decide to take us on.’

Further, the executive disclosed to the parliament‘s communications portfolio committee that the legal action may have an impact on smaller mobile players and end users, depending on what course of action MTN decides to follow. ‘There might be an application if they just want to review the regulations, then our regulations stand up until the court has set them aside or referred them back to us… Unfortunately that will have an impact on the smaller operators, especially Telkom and Cell C, and it will have an impact on end users that are specifically on those networks’, Batyi added.

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