Telecoms News - In Brief

Telecoms

- The deadline for the submission of technical and financial proposals for the privatisation of Nitel and its mobile arm, M-tel, has been extended from Friday, January 22, 2010 to Friday, February 5, 2010.

- Telkom Kenya will be sending 100 employees home this week, becoming the latest telecommunications firm to succumb to operational pressures as competition in the telecoms sectors hots up on all fronts. The latest round of retrenchments at the firm will affect middle management employees who Telkom Kenya says are "not compatible with the company's vision going forward".

- South African second network operator (SNO) Neotel has announced plans to implement individual fixed line number portability in April 2010. Angus Hay, executive head of technology at Neotel, said: ‘The porting of numbers in blocks of 10,000 or 1,000 has been available for some months now. Unfortunately that excluded many businesses, as it is only relevant to very large corporations. We are already testing 100 block porting, and as of April will be able to do 100 block and individual porting for any customer.’

- One of the consumer rights groups in the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) sector, the National Association of Telecommunications Subscribers (NATCOMS) has advocated for a consumer representative in the board of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC). The national president of NATCOMS, Chief Deolu Ogunbanjo, made this call while evaluating 'A Decade of NCC's Telecommunications Consumerism,' just as he solicited voice call tariff reduction to N20.00.

- Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has said that mobile payment system will take off in the country by middle of the year. The bank has received many applications for license to operate mobile payment schemes in the country. In preparation to the commencement of mobile payment in the country, CBN has set up a mobile payment policy and oversight unit with the mandate to ensure compliance and recommend approval for license.