Telecom Services

South Africa: Telkom Partially Withdraws Court Case Against Spectrum Allocations

Telecoms giant Telkom has withdrawn part of its court application against the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (Icasa) that forces the regulator to inform all potential parties interested in the spectrum auction of the proceedings.

In late 2020, Telkom took Icasa to court over its "flawed" spectrum auction, saying that the process must be halted saying that the invitations to apply (ITAs) for the International Mobile Telecommunications (IMT) spectrum and the Wireless Open Access Network (Woan) were not sound.

Telkom's initial affidavit which was tabled at the Pretoria High Court specified that interested parties should be alerted to ensure that they have an opportunity to be heard in parts B and C of the proceedings should they elect to participate.

In Part B of the three-fold application, Telkom seeks an order interdicting the completion of the spectrum assignment process contemplated in the two ITAs pending Part C's outcome, which aims to review and set aside the authority's decisions to publish the two ITAs.

ICASA noted that Telkom had withdrawn Part A of the court application despite Telkom's continuance of Part B and Part C of its application. The regulating authority says it remains committed to seeing this licensing process being completed for the benefit of all citizens in South Africa, most importantly, the consumers of electronic communication services. Icasa chairperson, Dr Keabetswe Modimoeng said should be done no later than the end of March 2021. "We have adequately consulted relevant stakeholders and the public throughout this process and cannot do so to the point of regulatory paralysis."

Modimoeng further mentioned that all people deserve improved service quality and experience and reduced data and voice costs.

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