Cell C applies for urgent interdict against ICASA over new data rules

Cell C said it has been forced to apply for an urgent interdict against ICASA, following the publication of its amended End-User and Subscriber Services Charter Regulations.

The recently-published amendments – which include forcing networks to let users roll over unused mobile data, transfer data to other subscribers, and not charge OOB rates by default – came with a one-month window in which they had to be implemented.

Telkom and Cell C requested that ICASA extend its deadline to implement the new regulations. MTN also stated an extension was needed.

“Prior to publication, Cell C advised the regulator that while it was fully committed to complying with the regulations, it was impossible to meet the proposed timeline,” said a Cell C spokesperson.

“Despite this, ICASA issued the regulations with the one-month timeframe still included.”

It stated that ICASA was asked multiple times before the publication of the amendments to allow for an extension.

No response

Cell C has not received a response from ICASA, it said, and has turned to the High Court for help – applying for an urgent interdict so it has a “reasonable timeline for implementation of the regulations”.

“To fully implement the necessary changes across its entire product suite, intensive development and numerous system changes will need to be made followed by rigorous testing before Cell C can offer this to its customers,” said Cell C.

“As a result, Cell C and its vendors are technically not able to meet the deadline set by ICASA. Cell C’s billing and other technical platforms are highly complex and rely on one another to operate effectively, which means that a change in one system often results in changes being required in other systems.”

Cell C added that it would be surprised if any of the mobile operators will be fully compliant with ICASA’s implementation deadline – Friday, 8 June 2018.

Cell C said it will need at least six months to properly comply.

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Cell C applies for urgent interdict against ICASA over new data rules