See also:
» 16.02.2010 - Kenya heading for a political disaster
» 15.02.2010 - Kibaki overrules PM’s decision
» 10.02.2010 - New TV series target Kenyan youth
» 26.01.2010 - US mission to address E/Africa human rights before AU Summit
» 14.01.2010 - Kenya to sell shares in 5 sugar companies
» 04.01.2010 - Rhino poachers arrested in Kenya
» 22.12.2009 - Kenya to counter Tanzania's Ivory sales proposal
» 21.12.2009 - Environmentalists fight developments in Tana River

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Economy - Development | Technology

Stakeholders unhappy with Kenya telecom reshuffle

HANA / afrol News, 9 March - Telecommunications providers in Kenya have reacted with dismay to the government's decision to dissolve the Communications Commission of Kenya's (CCK) board of directors and relieve the director general of his duties. It was a "dark day in Kenya's communications sector," they hold.

In a press release, Raphael Tuju, Kenya's Minister for Information and Communication, announced that he has dissolved the CCK Board of Directors and sent S Kirui, the board's Director-General, on compulsory leave. Dr J Kulubi, the former secretary to the National Communications Secretariat, has been appointed as acting Director-General.

Joseph Mucheru, chairman of the Telecommunications Service Providers Association of Kenya (TESPOK) issued a statement describing the government's decision as "totally incomprehensible".

He said, "The actions taken by the government can only be construed as intrusive, obstructive short-sighted and diversionary as they come in the midst of an ongoing liberalisation of the sector, end of exclusivity of Telkom Kenya and fast convergence of technologies that are currently presenting regulators worldwide with unforeseen challenges."

Last month, amid rising tensions between State House and the regulatory authority, the Nairobi government instructed the national telecommunications company to re-introduce voice over IP (VoIP) services.

Mr Muchero, speaking on behalf of the industry, said that the order to dissolve was a poorly thought out action, "The ongoing disputes within the sector, which have been prompted by the newly opened market, demand that the country have a stable, objective and level-headed regulator."

- This action by the government has thrown the entire industry into disarray, Mr Muchero added. "The CCK Board plays such a crucial role that now no further licenses can be issued, no disputes can be settled and no formal regulatory interventions can take place and there is no clear communication from the government as to how affairs within the sector are to be managed."

On hearing this news, William Stucke, chairman of the African ISP Association, reacted by saying "Good grief! Now watch investments in Africa as a whole, not just Kenya wither up and blow away in the wind..."

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