MISA-Zimbabwe welcomes the government’s decision to suspend the exorbitant increase in mobile network voice and data charges through the setting of floor tariffs following a public outcry.
Information, Communication Technologies Minister, Supa Mandiwanzira, on 12 January issued a directive for immediate suspension of the increase, which came into effect on 9 January, 2016. The increase followed a directive by the Postal and Telecommunications Regulatory Authority of Zimbabwe (POTRAZ). Two network operators, Econet Wireless and Telecel Zimbabwe had already effected the increases.
In its reversal statement, POTRAZ noted the conduct and double standards of the Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) who were now denying that they engaged the regulator seeking for the increase.
Meanwhile, MISA–Zimbabwe strongly feels that there is still need for further consultations on an ideal pricing model for the sector given that Zimbabwe’s mobile data tariffs are among the highest on the continent.
The envisioned pricing model should strike a balance between business interests and citizens rights to access. This can be achieved by ensuring competition and innovation in the sector in the interest of promoting access, affordability and respect for human rights.
Read MISA -Zimbabwe statement following the announcement of the increase here