Freedom Front Plus
Freedom Front Plus

ANC government aiming for total control of mobile phone industry

The ANC government’s plan to take broad band spectrum away from mobile phone operators is part of the ANC government’s concept of a developmental state where the state controls markets and even participate in them. It has now hit the mobile phone industry in its full extent, Adv. Anton Alberts, the FF Plus’ parliamentary spokesperson on Communication, says.

Adv. Alberts says that after 21 years of struggling to deregulate the market and allow for competition to thrive, the ANC now wants to have total control again.

“It is a still-born idea, as the ANC government has no proof that it could manage commercial resources to the advantage of the country and its people.

“One merely has to look at the mess in which the majority of state owned enterprises, such as Eskom, Prasa and PetroSA find themselves. There is a suspicion that the government’s plan was borne from the motivation to once again hand out broad band spectrum licences to the inner circles of the ANC, the advantage of Zuma camp.

“The blatant purposeful certainty to do this most probably comes from the judgement of AgriSA’s court case about mineral resources where resources are placed in the hands of the state as trustees.

“Technically, the ANC can argue that this spectrum is a resource which has to rest with the state in trust, and in this way take it away from existing operators, without paying a cent in compensation.

“The ANC had specifically tried to include such a clause in the first version of the Expropriation Act with regards to the assets of foreign investors.

“It was removed later after a lot of pressure. Such a step will naturally lead to great losses for mobile phone operators and worsen the unemployment situation.

“The best plan to expand broad band services to everyone, especially to people in rural areas, is to allow for competition and most probably also create tax incentives for companies to expand their networks to less developed areas.

“For the ANC to manage everything itself, will merely result in a sorry tale of failure. The ANC’s record attests of this,” Adv. Alberts said.


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