ICASA can’t penalise mobile networks – High Court

The High Court has given mobile network operators and ICASA 10 days to file answering affidavits to Cell C’s interdict against new mobile data regulations.

“[ICASA] will not take any steps to implement the End-User and Subscriber Services Charter Amendment Regulations,” ruled the High Court.

ICASA’s amended regulations were meant to be implemented on 8 June 2018.

Vodacom, MTN, Cell C, and Telkom repeatedly asked ICASA for an extension, but Cell C stated it received no feedback from the regulator.

With no feedback from ICASA regarding an extension, operators relied on inside sources at ICASA, said a person with knowledge of the matter.

The source informed them that ICASA would grant a three-month extension.

At the last minute, however, the networks were reportedly informed that no extension would be granted. It is not clear what changed, or if their source was misinformed.

Cell C then filed an urgent interdict against ICASA and the implementation of the amended regulations.

ICASA stated it will defend the court application.

It said the “effect of the extension would be that consumers will continue to be prejudiced” by mobile networks.

Legal action

Following the urgent application, the High Court has given ICASA, MTN, Telkom, and Vodacom 10 days in which to respond to Cell C’s filing.

After this, Cell C will have five days to respond.

Until then, ICASA is not allowed to enact its amended regulations, stated the court.

Cell C said it was relieved by the court order, adding that it “was unfortunate that we had to resort to launching the High Court application in order to get a response from ICASA”.

Now read: ICASA’s big plans for data prices in South Africa

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ICASA can’t penalise mobile networks – High Court