The Parliamentary Committee on Government Assurance and Reforms has asked Malawi Communications and Regulatory Authority (Macra) to take the country’s telecoms operators to task for failing to provide quality services to consumers.
Speaking after touring Macra headquarters in Blantyre on Wednesday, the committee’s acting chairperson Raphael Mhone emphasised the need for the regulator to enforce monitoring to ensure quality service.
He, however, said without digital monitoring, it would be difficult for the regulator to effectively monitor all operators.
“If Macra can improve more in terms of the continued monitoring with precision, we will be assured that all the operators will be taken to task.
“There is need for the regulator to digitise all its operations for effective monitoring so that consumers get the best out of what is being provided,” he said.
On his part, Macra director general Godfrey Itaye said currently, they are facing difficulties to enforce their operations because of lack of modern equipment.
He said in the absence of the Consolidated Information and Communications Technology Regulatory Management System (Cirms)—christened spy machine—the regulator may not be able to fully track all operators’ service sto enforce quality.
But Mhone said their committee supports the implementation of Cirms, adding that studies on its use show that it is of maximum benefit to the consumers and the regulator.
The committee has since commended Macra for its efforts in ensuring that broadcasters are delivering quality services.
According to the United Nations International Telecommunication Union’s (ITU) Information Society Report 2015, Malawi is one of the countries with expensive telecommunication services in the world.
Apart from the price, telecommunication penetration is also low.