Regulation & Policy News: In Brief

Regulation & Policy

- The Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (ICASA) could face legal action if it did not reconsider its decision to give companies just three weeks to apply for the new digital mobile television service licence. According to a local media report by BusinessDay on 26 April 2010, a black-owned Mobile TV Consortium sent a lawyer’s letter last week to ICASA chairman Paris Mashile, objecting to the 7 May 2010 deadline. The letter said it was not reasonable to expect companies to meet the requirements of the mobile television regulations in the time given, and that the deadline was not only anticompetitive but unconstitutional as it was biased towards existing operators.

- In Kampala, High Court judge Vincent Zehurikize asked the Government and CBS radio employees to reach an amicable settlement over the closure of the station.

The judge criticised the Attorney General for dragging his feet on the matter.

The Uganda Broadcasting Council closed the radio station in September last year over allegations that it had incited the public to riot after the Katikkiro of Buganda, John Baptist Walusimbi, was barred from proceeding to Kayunga to prepare for the Kabaka's visit. Over 100 CBS employees last year took the Government to court, seeking orders to have the station re-opened. They argued that its closure was unjustified and had rendered them jobless.

- In Durban, the SA Municipal Workers' Union (Samwu) has laid a complaint against e.tv for allegedly using video footage captured last year for a story on this year's ongoing municipal strike, the union said on Tuesday. The material, captured during an entirely different matter, was carried on Monday during eNews coverage of the strike without any indication that it was file footage, Samwu said in a statement. It charged that this was designed to create an inaccurate view of the strike. Samwu said the footage used showed a banner and members of the Independent Municipal and Allied Trade Union (Imatu) which was not participating in the present strike.