No reason has been given for the suspensions and the operators failed to give an explanation and only went as far as fingering the regulator. Now, POTRAZ has finally offered a statement regarding this issue.
In a response to questions we emailed regarding the suspended promotions, the Acting Director General of POTRAZ, Cecilia Nyamutswa has said that the regulator did not issue a directive to suspend any of the mobile promotions.
According to Nyamutswa,
There was no directive to suspend promotions. Each promotion runs for a specific period with an expiry date . There was no instruction to operators to stop any promotion in the middle of its life. If any promotions have stopped running ,it is because the period for which it was approved has expired. Operators do not run unapproved promotions.
On whether or not there will be a resumption of any of the suspended promotions Nyamutswa has said that any promotion that gets approval from the regulator will run for the period for which it is approved.
The same approach is also being used for all other promotions that are applied for by other telecoms service providers including internet service providers.
POTRAZ’s response doesn’t give the reason behind its refusal to allow for the continuation of the promos which leaves a lot of room for speculation for everyone from industry analysts to conspiracy theorists.
The regulator has refused to give a clear explanation that would shed light on why these promos couldn’t be carried again. It feels like the real reason is being hidden from the public.
At the same time, the same response seems like the regulator’s attempt at distancing itself from any of the controversy and concern around the suspended promotions.
By explaining how it maintains the right to end any promotion when it has expired and how all the suspensions announced in the past week were within that right the regulator is creating the impression that this was an eventuality that all parties should have been prepared for and that the regulator isn’t at fault.
In short, all three operators should have just informed their subscribers that the specific promotions weren’t being renewed (it’s in the fine print – its a “temporary” promotion) and not mention POTRAZ.
However, the fact that any decision to give a green light to a promotion rests with the regulator means that when it comes to the termination of those same promos that millions of subscribers have grown accustomed to for years POTRAZ is still accountable if the promo is launched or not.