Uh oh, MTN is in trouble for changing the price of its WhatsApp bundle

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The Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (Icasa) has announced that its Complaints and Compliance Committee (CCC) will hold public hearings in relation to a matter regarding MTN.

The hearings come as a result of MTN’s apparent contravention of Regulation 9 of the Standard Terms and Conditions.

For interest’s sake, that regulation puts forth that a licensee must notify Icasa about a charged service seven days before it is implemented. In the case of MTN the operator changed the pricing of its WhatsApp Monthly 1GB bundle. The price adjustment was done before the seven day period and without approval from Icasa.

“MTN contravened Section 9 (1) of the regulations which states that a licensee may not provide any service for a charge, fee or other compensation, unless a price(s) for the service and other terms and conditions for the provision of such service have been filed with the Authority at least 7 days prior to the provision of the said service,” said Icasa in a statement.

The authority also went on to say that the actions of MTN have undermined its efforts to bring down the cost of communication in South Africa.

“In its reply to the CCC, MTN stated that the early implementation of the amendment
was done out of necessity as the company was faced with a choice between breaking
the letter of regulation and suffering some more serious harm,” Icasa said.

The public hearings are set to take place on 4th March at Icasa’s head office in Centurion.

Brendyn Lotz

Brendyn Lotz

Brendyn Lotz writes news, reviews, and opinion pieces for Hypertext. His interests include SMEs, innovation on the African continent, cybersecurity, blockchain, games, geek culture and YouTube.