ZICTA has clarified that it has not issued any licence to Mobile Broadband Zambia Limited trading as Vodafone Zambia to offer voice services in the country.
In a statement, ZICTA Head of Public Relations Ngabo Nankonde explained that the firm’s licence is restricted to internet services only.
“In light of the rising speculation from the general public and other stakeholders, as evidenced by the numerous enquires that the Zambia Information and Communications Technology Authority (ZICTA) has been receiving recently, the Authority wishes to dispel the perception that Mobile Broadband Zambia Limited Trading as “Vodafone Zambia “is entering the market as a voice provider,” Mrs Nankonde said.
She said ZICTA wishes to reassure members of the public that it has not issued a licence permitting any entity other than MTN, Airtel and Zamtel to provide voice services to the public.
“Such a licence is an individual licence which, under the current licensing framework, is issued through a competitive process,” she said.
She added, “Mobile Broadband Zambia Limited currently only holds the following licenses: 1. A class Network (wireless internet) licence; and 2. A class Service (internet) licence.”
Mrs Nankonde said these licenses only enable Mobile Broadband Zambia Limited to construct a data network and to provide data services to the Public.
She stressed that Mobile Broadband Zambia Limited is therefore not allowed under the said licences to provide voice services.
“Mobile Broadband Zambia Limited’s scope of operations and service offering are therefore strictly limited to the provision of mobile data services and not voice services.”
She said Mobile Broadband Zambia was assigned a Mobile Network Code (MNC) for network identification and to facilitate their service offering, but has Not been assigned any subscriber numbers by ZICTA.
Mrs Nankonde added that Mobile Broadband Zambia Limited trading as “Vodafone Zambia must not be confused to be “Vodacom” which currently has no licences to operate in Zambia.
“We once again wish to reiterate that Mobile Broadband Zambia Limited, is only permitted to provide retail data services to the Zambian market and Mobile Broadband Zambia Limited trading as “Vodafone Zambia “has been directed to ensure that this must be unequivocally reflected in all aspects of its operations including branding and corporate communications.”
This week, the Vodafone Group announced that it will launch its high-speed mobile data services in Zambia jointly with unlisted telecoms provider Afrimax, tapping growing demand for data-heavy services on the continent.
The companies plan to provide high-speed 4G data services under the Vodafone Zambia brand and will also open retail stores across Zambia.