Safaricom Facing Huge Fine After 2-Hour Service Outage On Monday


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Safaricom could be asked to pay up to 0.1 percent of its gross annual revenue in fines for the outage of service on Monday, 24 April.

The Communication Authority revealed that it has asked the telecommunication giant to explain the 2-hour long outage which led to a disruption in its core services. Phone calls, SMS, data, M-Pesa and other enterprise services were all affected.

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The outage began at around 9:30 a.m and was fully resolved 4:30 a.m according to Safaricom CEO Bob Collymore. Speaking after restoring its services yesterday, he said:

“Our engineers identified the root cause of the outage, which was a failure on both our core network as well as our redundancy options. Our team worked as quickly as possible to resolve the issue and invoked our business continuity planning protocol to restore services and the incident was marked as closed at 4.30pm.”

The Communications authority, however, says all telecommunication services should guarantee a 99.9 percent delivery.

The director general of the regulatory body, Francis Wangusi, said the authority will request Safaricom to pay a fine if the outage was a result of its technical failure.

“We are waiting to get an explanation of what happened. We should not have a communication breakdown in the country. If it was a deliberate move, we are going to take action,” said Wangusi at a press briefing.

“We cannot tolerate a downtime of more than one hour,” he added.

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According to the CA, telecommunication companies in Kenya have failed to meet its Quality of Service score of 80 percent. The overall performance of the three telecoms firms was at 50 percent, a drop from 62.5 percent recorded in the 2014-15 financial year.

The 0.1 percent of the gross annual revenue fine to be possibly dished out by the authority is a standard fee on telecom firms for failing to meet the standards.