UCC warns HITS risks losing licence over failure to launch
The Ugandan Communications Commission (UCC) has warned HITS Telecom Uganda that its failure to launch a commercial operation could mean that its licences will be revoked. HITS was awarded Public Infrastructure Provider (PIP) and Public Service Provider (PSP) concessions in March 2007, allowing it to offer a range of telecoms services including wireless; a requirement of the concessions is that operations begin within 18 months. The company completed a test call in November 2007 and at the time announced it was expecting to launch commercially in the first quarter of 2008. However, no launch was forthcoming and to date HITS has remained tightlipped on the cause of the delay. Rumours in the local press suggest that the company is struggling to raise the necessary investment, although this has been denied by spokesperson Jimmy Kiberu. According to Mr Kiberu HITS will make a ‘major announcement’ next week.