BUSINESS & FINANCE

Kenyans to wait longer to enjoy lower call rates

Kenyans will have to wait longer to enjoy cheaper call rates after the Communications and Multimedia Appeals Tribunal stopped the implementation of the government directive.

The Rosemary Kuria-led tribunal yesterday said the status quo should be maintained in the matter after telecommunication company, Safaricom, appealed against the said decision by the Communication Authority (CA). 

In a press release dated December 22, 2021, the regulator’s Director-General Ezra Chiloba had directed the reduction of call and SMS termination rates for callers talking across networks from Sh0.99 to Sh0.12 per minute effective January 1, 2022.

Safaricom, however, appealed the decision saying the regulator did not conduct effective public participation and was in breach of the national values and principles of governance as stipulated in Article 10 of the Constitution.

It was Safaricom’s contention that CA did not afford it an opportunity to be heard and make representations before making the decision in complete disregard of Article 47 of the Constitution as well as section 4 of the Fair Administrative Action Act, 2015. 

“The Respondent adopted a procedure that was unreasonable and procedurally unfair in arriving at the impugned decision contrary to Article 47 of the Constitution as well as section 4 of the Fair Administrative Action Act, 2015,” argued Safaricom.

Telco accused CA of not furnishing them with information, materials, and evidence it relied on making the decision.

Tribunal also allowed the Consumers Federation of Kenya to be enjoined in the matter. 

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