Uganda Telecom and Airtel Uganda seem to have resolved their interconnection issues. On early this week, Airtel Uganda sent out a public notice in the media to announce to their customers that with effect from Friday 3rd February, 2017 they will no longer be able to make calls to UTL. The situation set Uganda’s oldest telecom in a frenzy and also mediation by UCC in a bid to resolve the issues. Today, the UTL board chairman, Mr Kaboyo Steven, said in a statement that;
“Uganda Telecom is pleased to inform all its customers that they can continue to make and receive calls from Airtel. The Management of Airtel and Uganda Telecom have resolved all the issues related to contractual obligations and are pleased to announce it is Business As Usual.”
For how long this will last before the next interconnection dispute is yet to be seen. It should be recalled that prior to the current woes, in 2011, Airtel suspended calls to UTL over unpaid UGX 10 billion in interconnection fees. UTL later paid the debt. Early this week, UCC further directed UTL management to ensure that it forthwith pays its outstanding debt to Airtel so as to ensure that the existing agreement is not breached.The telecom regulator, UCC also came out to mediate the situation and requested Airtel not to swicth off its interconnection from UTL. UCC also directed UTL to submit a detailed plan showing how it intends to settle Airtel Uganda’s debt before close of business Thursday 2nd February, 2017.
Today’s press release by UTL indicates that all issues have been resolved with a payment plan in place.
Mr Kaboyo said ;
“Uganda Telecom regrets any anxiety the announcements made early this week may have
caused its customers” He concluded by thanking UTL’s customers for their loyality and patronage.