Spectrum Management

South Africa: MTN Latest Operators To Take Regulator To Court Over Spectrum Issues

MTN South Africa has, according to reports, become the latest in the line of telecoms operators and stakeholders in South Africa, to take the country's telecoms regulator - the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (ICASA) - to court due to alleged shenanigans over the way its spectrum auctions processes have been executed.
According to reports, the company has filed an application at a Johannesburg High Court, seeking urgent a revert and redress ruling on at least two decisions made by ICASA within the spectrum auction process.
According to reporting by ITWeb Africa, MTN is challenging ICASA on its decision to implement an auction process and system that effectively creates two tiers of mobile operators and operating and unnecessary, albeit allegedly discriminatory playing field. According to the court affidavit filed by MTN, it says it is "seeking relief with a very narrow focus, limited only to reviewing (with the objective of) removing the Tier 1 and 2 categorisation and the opt-in round, from the auction process."
MTN says it understands the absolute importance of spectrum services, and how this impacts of South Africans, and as a result, it is not interested in delaying the process, but also do believe that in the interest of all stakeholders, the auction should be conducted in a "fair, rationale and reasonable manner".
MTN says it is only calling for the tiering categorisation and the opt-in rounds mechanism to be taken out of ICASA spectrum auctioning process.

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