The Consolidated (ICT) Regulatory Management System (CIRMS) –widely known as Spy Machine – that has for the past four years received some resistance from certain quarters including the country’s phone operators will finally come into effect in January next year, Malawi’s communications regulatory body has said after the High Court in Zomba vacated TNM’s order that stopped the regulator from using it.
Malawi introduced CIRMS in 2011 but the system has received serious resistance that included court battles from operators who branded it “the spy machine”.
TNM obtained a stay order earlier this year stopping Macra from implementing the system, arguing Malawi Communications Regulatory Authority (MACRA decision to implement Cirms was unreasonable because there was no legal framework for its implementation.
But Justice Redson Kapindu of Zomba High Court registry dismissed the judicial review and stay of execution by TNM against the implementation of the ‘spy machine’.
The regulator’s Legal Services Director , James Kaphale, said the judge ruled last week Thursday giving Macra a lee way to roll out the machine.
“As Macra we are excited with the development as the case has delayed the implementation of the CIRMS,” Kaphale told Nyasa Times.
MACRA Director General, Godfrey Itaye has said that come January 2016 CIRMS will be operational.
Itaye, who has labelled the development as a great empowerment to MACRA, explains that as a regulator, MACRA will be in a better position to monitor telecommunication operators in order to ensure that consumers get value for money services.
“The CIRMS will enable MACRA to ensure that customers get quality service, improve in revenue collection, ensure fraud control as well as spectrum management and allocation,” he said Tuesday this week.
MACRA wonders why some mobile operators resist the implementation of the CIRMS machine a development that has delayed Malawi from advancing in this needful technological direction in this age of technology advancement. He also said that CIRMS is also there for their own.
“The operators will be able to realize more revenue as bypass calls will be put in check as well as less frequency interference which will mean quality service on top of ensuring top quality service standards due to constant monitoring, “he said, adding that once CIRMS is in operation consumers of telecommunication services will be enjoying high quality service standards while the government will be collecting more revenue.
Currently MACRA relies on data provided by the service operators themselves hence the need for independent validated data that CIRMS will be able to provide.
With the ‘spy machine’ MACRS will be able to arbitrate any network traffic disputes, creating new technical frameworks for number portability and more, noted Itaye.
“Malawi is not the first to adopt the system as countries like Rwanda, Gambia, Guinea, Congo Brazzaville are already using it while Uganda and Ghana are in the process of adopting,” said Itaye.
He says or MACRA, the revenue realized will enhance and advance its ability to manage the dynamic telecommunication industry effectively and efficiently through the more revenue realized.
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