A directive signed by Telecommunications Minister Emery Okundji in April threatens to disconnect some of Vodacom Congo’s 11.8 million customers who’ve yet to switch to 3G and 4G, or live in remote areas not yet covered by the faster data services.
Johannesburg-based Vodacom owns 51percent of Congo’s biggest mobile operator.
A first hearing of Vodacom Congo’s complaint against the Telecommunications Ministry took place at the Council of State on Monday, the tribunal’s head clerk, Jules Ekatou, said in Kinshasa. The court’s judges are deliberating and will give instructions on June 17 on how the case should proceed, he said.
“There are ongoing discussions with all the relevant authorities to resolve this unfortunate situation,” Vodacom spokesperson Byron Kennedy said.