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Telecommunication in Africa Airtel Sierra Leone fined $1.5m

The fine according to the Chairman of the regulatory agency Momoh Konteh is in breach of an agreement signed with NATCOM to maintain Sierra Leone mobile network services at International Telecommunications Union Standards (ITU).

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Airtel Sierra Leone play

Airtel Sierra Leone

The National Telecommunications Commission (NATCOM), the Telecoms regulator of Sierra Leone  has imposed a fine of one million two hundred thousand dollars (USD$1.2m) on Airtel Sierra Leone for failing to offer quality mobile network service

The National Telecommunicafor also defrauding subscribers.

The fine according to the Chairman of the regulatory agency Momoh Konteh is in breach of an agreement signed with NATCOM to maintain Sierra Leone mobile network services at International Telecommunications Union Standards (ITU).

The operators agreed to closely monitor key network quality indicators in line with ITU standards over the next 45 days and any necessary improvement will be made to comply with the said standard.

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The Chairman of NATCOM also disclosed that Airtel should pay the US$1.2m fine within seven working days or drastic actions will be taken against the company.

 He said after receiving several complaints from customers that Airtel is stealing from subscribers on voice and data usage, an investigation was mounted and it was concluded that the company is using pay as you go and data bundles to defraud customers after subscribing for Facebook, Twitter and Watsapp. He said the company is using the Pay As You Go (PAYG) services to steal from the accounts of customers.


Momoh Konte also disclosed that the ‘Pay As You Go’ and data bundles have also been suspended with immediate effect until an audit of the Airtel billing system is concluded.  The Chairman of the regulatory agency said “we are going to make follow ups on the fines and ensure that they are enforced according to the law.”

He said the current Commission is transparent and after fines are paid they will in turn make it known in public. He declined to comment about payment of previous fines by teleco’s Konte said “we are not here to hurt mobile operators, we know they are doing business but they should not use their investment to exploit our people or deprive them from getting quality and affordable mobile service.”

He also said that as a regulator “our main focus is to ensure quality service and to also protect public interest.”


 

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