Drama at ICASA LLU hearings

The Local Loop Unbundling (LLU) hearings took a surprising turn today (12 October 2011) after Telkom slated ICASA in what they called a ‘grave concern’.

Telkom told the ICASA LLU panel that they were very concerned about ICASA’s conduct in these hearings, citing the panel’s inclusion of aspects which they felt fell outside of the scope of the hearings.

Telkom said that it is challenging for them to see how their participation will be meaningful considering ICASA’s conduct, and that they will not engage in issues which they feel are irrelevant to the inquiry.

ICASA further said that they are currently in a closed period which inhibits them from revealing certain financial information. Telkom added that they can only assume it is a consequence of poor planning from ICASA to hold the hearings during Telkom’s closed season.

The LLU panel chairperson, ICASA councilor William Stucke, halted the proceedings for private deliberations between Telkom and ICASA.

At the time of publication the deliberations were still ongoing (around 30 minutes after proceedings were halted).

After approximately an hour of deliberations ICASA and Telkom took their seats again, and Chairperson William Stucke announced that “the authority and stakeholder [Telkom] held frank discussions and we are ready to proceed”.

Despite the deliberations Telkom continued to question ICASA’s legal authority regarding the LLU process, arguing that ICASA has no legal grounding for the LLU proceedings and possible LLU regulations which may follow.

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Drama at ICASA LLU hearings