ICASA, NCC sign consumer complaints agreement

Regulation & Policy

An MOU has been signed between ICASA and the NCC to help deal with telecoms-related consumer complaints faster.

The National Consumer Commission (NCC) and the Independent Communications Authority of SA (ICASA) have entered into a cooperative working agreement to help resolve telecommunication and broadcast-related complaints.

The entities signed a memorandum of understanding to strengthen both their mandates and ensure complaints are dealt with by the rightful entity. The agreement will also create certainty for consumers as to how they should deal with complaints in the sector, ICASA COO Willinton Ngwepe said at a press briefing today.

Both bodies receive "hundreds" of complaints relating to the telecoms and broadcasting industry each year, and this understanding should remove duplication, says Ngwepe.

"This formal relationship allows for complaints to be classified in terms of our respective jurisdictions, which makes complaints handling more efficient," says NCC commissioner Ebrahim Mohamed.

"The NCC will attend to matters relating to contracts, misrepresentation, bait marketing, faulty handsets, as well as call limits. ICASA will deal data, international roaming, pricing and quality of networks," says Mohamed.

The memorandum was also drawn up to prevent "forum shopping" where a consumer would lodge a complaint with the two separate entities and chose the more favourable outcome.
Source: ITWeb 10 July 2015