By Auxilia Katongomara
Parliament has summoned Information Communication Technology, Postal and Courier Services Minister Supa Mandiwanzira to explain developments surrounding last month’s increase in data tariffs and the subsequent decision to suspend the hikes.
The chairperson of the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on ICTs, Mr Nelson Chamisa, confirmed that the Minister is expected to appear before the committee today.
“We have summoned Minister Mandiwanzira to appear before the committee tomorrow (today) but am yet to check with the secretary whether or not the Minister is coming.
‘’We are also summoning Potraz, we have already summoned the mobile network operators. We are also interested in hearing what the consumers have to say,” said Mr Chamisa.
According to a letter seen by our Bulawayo Bureau, the Clerk of Parliament, Mr Kennedy Chokuda, said the hearing would start at 2pm today.
“The above mentioned committee is inviting you to a meeting on Monday 6 February 2017 at 1400 hours in the National Assembly, Parliament Building.
‘’The purpose of the meeting is for you to update the Committee on the developments surrounding the increase in data tariffs and the subsequent reversal of the decision and how it is going to impact internet accessibility in Zimbabwe,” reads the letter.
In a tweet on Saturday, Minister Mandiwanzira said he would attend the hearing.
“I have agreed to appear before the Committee on Monday as per invitation. It will be INFORMATIVE,” he tweeted.
Government last month suspended mobile data tariff increases following an outcry from mobile phone users.
Mobile service companies were also ordered to reimburse affected customers. Potraz told mobile operators to set the floor price for traditional voice services at 12 cents per minute while the floor price for data was set at 2c per megabyte.
A floor price is a minimum effective tariff chargeable per minute of voice calls and per megabyte of data. The Herald