Siyabonga Cwele plays hardball on data costs
Telecommunications minister Siyabonga Cwele has threatened to review contracts into which the government has entered with cellphone network companies should they continue to resist calls for the cost of data to fall. Cwele claimed network operators were blackmailing the government by warning of job losses should they be forced to cut data prices. The cabinet has given him a month to consider alternative ways to reduce the price of data while the Competition Commission and communications regulator, the Independent Communications Authority of SA (Icasa), conduct separate investigations into the matter. Vodacom and Cell C said they are co-operating with the department of telecommunications over lower data prices, and disputed the allegation. The ANC national executive lekgotla has given Cwele's department until October to push for lower data prices. Cwele said his department would continue to engage with companies to get them to bow to pressure from consumers. "[If they don't co-operat...
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