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Telecos seek redress at Telecom Tribunal over NCA sanctions

By Justice Kofi Bimpeh
nca_telecos

The four Mobile Network Operators, MNOs; AirtelTigo, Glo, MTN and Vodafone, sanctioned by the National Communications Authority, NCA, for their non-compliance with various Quality of Service, QoS, requirements are seeking redress at the Telecommunication Tribunal.

The Mobile Network Operators are challenging the sanctions from the NCA especially how the main opinion calls, one of the parameters which was tested by the NCA was arrived at.

NCA in November 2018 fined the telecos a total of GHC34,065,000.00 – AirtelTigo (GHC11,635,000.00), Glo (GHC4,460,000.00), MTN (GHC9,080,000.00) and Vodafone (GHC8,890,000.00), for not being able to meet their Licence Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) in some District Capitals with regards to QoS; Obligations for Coverage, Data, Voice and Speech Quality.

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Member of Parliament’s Communications Committee, Samuel Dzata George sides with the move by the telcos to seek redress.

According to him, NCA despite its lawful mandate to regulate the telecommunication industry cannot just sanction the operators.

He noted that NCA must first identify why the Mobile Network Operators were not able to meet their QoS requirements before issuing out sanctions.

The MP also indicated that the regulatory body after 3months of issuing the sanctions failed to prove the purpose of the fine and a clear roadmap on how the fine will be used, whether to improve the network service for the consumer or not.

He noted that the appropriate thing to be done is for the NCA to take 50% of the fine and allow the operators to outline a roadmap on how they will inject the remaining 50% into the provision of good service for their customers under the supervision of the regulator.

Samuel Dzata George ended that he is not sure the Tribunal will avert the sanctions totally but will arrive at a decision that will be more appropriate for the two parties.

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