ICTAK wants Safaricom denied operating licence

ICTAK wants Safaricom denied operating licence

CC image coutersy of rogiro on Flickr

The Information Communication Technology Association of Kenya (ICTAK) has written to the Communications Authority of Kenya (CAK) asking it not to grant Safaricom’s request for an operating licence renewal.

According to the Daily Nation, the ICT association is contending the operator has failed to comply with the constitution, sector legislation and licence conditions.

ICTAK secretary-general Kamotho Njenga said in a letter to the CAK should the regulator renew the licence in an unconvincing manner, the group would challenge the renewal at the Supreme Court.

Other issues raised were that Safaricom has failed to establish and publicise a mechanism for handling complaints and had not compensated clients when operations failed, as required by the Kenya Information and Communications (Consumer Protection) Regulations, 2010.

“The applicant has continued to offer substandard network services, sometimes under the pretext of insufficient spectrum,” ICTAK said.

“This ground is not sustainable since service quality largely depends on proper network planning and optimisation rather than deployment of additional spectrum which, in any event, is a scarce and finite resource globally.”

HumanIPO reported last month the CAK had called for objections to the renewal of Safaricom’s licence, with the operator having applied for a 15-year Network Facilities Provider Tier 1 licence allowing it to offer communication services based on satellite, terrestrial, mobile and fixed infrastructure and the International Gateway Licence, which provides global connectivity.

The renewal of the licence, which expires this month, has been a source of controversy, with regulator figures suggesting Safaricom was missing certain quality of service (QoS) targets, though Safaricom dismissed these claims.

Kenya’s Ministry of ICT cabinet secretary Dr Fred Matiangi has assured the public the licence renewal of the country’s leading operator Safaricom is on course and will be completed once the company meets certain requirements set by the CAK.

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