Rwanda authorities impose $8.5m fine on MTN for breach of regulations

Category: Africa/International, ICT 237

The Rwanda Utilities Regulatory Authority (RURA) has imposed a fine equivalent to $8.5 million on mobile provider, MTN for breaching the terms of its license in that country, a press release from the regulator May 16, 2017, says.

MTN Group has responded to the action, indicating that the fine relates to non-compliance with the Directives issued by the regulator prohibiting the inclusion of MTN Rwanda in the MTN South and East Africa (SEA) IT hub based in Uganda, in a press release issued Wednesday May, 17, 2017, obtained by ghanabusinessnews.com.

According to the RURA, the administrative sanctions were imposed on MTN Rwanda for non-compliance with its license obligations.

“MTN Rwanda Ltd implemented IT managed services under an MTN Regional Hub outside the country, in contravention of a Regulatory Directive issued by the RURA.

MTN Rwanda Ltd proceeded with its implementation despite having discussed the matter with the Regulator and having been warned that such an action would constitute a serious breach of license obligations and appropriate measures would be taken,” it said.

The RURA noted that by doing so, MTN Rwanda breached license obligations requiring it to comply with all applicable laws, regulations and any other regulatory instruments issued by the competent authority.

The regulator said it conducted a hearing on May 4, 2017 in which MTN Rwanda was informed of the breach and given a hearing.

“MTN Rwanda admitted the above mentioned breach,” the regulator said.

Meanwhile, MTN says it has been engaging with the regulator on this matter over the past four months, adding, “MTN Rwanda is currently studying the official notification and will continue to engage with the regulator on this matter,” it said.

MTN has the largest subscriber base in Rwanda with some five million customers.

By Emmanuel K. Dogbevi
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