MultiChoice returns to Malawi following court ruling

Source: MultiChoice

South Africa-based pay TV operator MultiChoice has resumed service in Malawi, following a long battle over pricing with the local regulator.

MultiChoice Africa Holdings (MAH) said it had decided to resume service following a new court ruling by the Malawi High Court in Lilongwe at the start of December.

The operator is reactivating all payment platform to enable resumption of the payment of subscriptions fees as per the price schedule effective on August 1.

“We are happy to be resuming services in Malawi and want to assure our customers that they can resume accessing our services as before. Apart from the service resumption, as a gesture of goodwill, MAH will provide free access to our Malawian customers, who have been active at least once within this current year i.e. from 1 April 2023, and who have an operational DStv decoder, to our premium package for 9 days from 6 December to 14 December 2023. Thereafter, access will be based on subscription fees paid,” said Keabetswe Modimoeng, group executive corporate affairs and stakeholder management at DStv Malawi.

MultiChoice said it was shutting down its service in the country in Austust following an injunction forbidding its local subsidiary from changing the tariffs for the offering.

MAH said its decision followed an injunction issued by the High Court in Lilongwe in a matter between MultiChoice Malawi (MCM) and the Malawi Communications Regulatory Authority (MACRA) prohibiting an adjustment to the DStv tariffs.

MAH had argued that its local subsidiary is not responsible for setting prices for the service, which are set by the parent company independently. MultiChoice Malawi does not offer DStv to the Malawi public. The local outfit is responsible for the digital-terrestrial GOtv offering, for which it applied and received approval from the regulator for price adjustments.

Having argued repeatedly that the Malawi operation was not responsible for the DStv service, MAH said the subsidiary was incapable of complying with the court order to implement MACRA’s ruling on prices.

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