Telkom CEO Sipho Maseko over the weekend fired the latest salvo in the on-going debate over mobile operators MTN and Vodacom’s actions and comments around the Call Termination Regulation debate.
“For many years we’ve been working to provide South Africans with a modern communications infrastructure. Today, we stand at a crossroads – you can hide behind regulations to protect profits, or we can all continue to expand access and lower costs,” Maseko opened in his letter.
Maseko highlighted four facts, and said that MTN and Vodacom’s recent actions fall short of what can be done to move the country forward.
“Despite your recent claims, history has shown that lowering the mobile termination rates has not stopped your capital investment, nor your return to shareholders. In fact, in 2012 Vodacom shareholders were paid R12bn in dividends, while MTN paid almost R15bn to their shareholders,” he said.
He went on to state that lower mobile termination rates create a more equitable playing field and – more importantly – increase access to the modern economy through expanded communications for all South Africans.
“With Vodacom and MTN standing in the way of lowering mobile termination rates, I believe you are standing in the way of SA’s future. Are your actions in the best interest of the country?” he concluded.
Charlie Fripp – Consumer Tech editor