BAZ contests Kwese ruling

Daniel Nemukuyu Senior Court Reporter—
The Broadcasting Authority of Zimbabwe (BAZ) has approached the Supreme Court contesting a High Court decision allowing Econet Media Limited (Mauritius) to distribute Kwese TV satellite content to the Zimbabwean viewership. High Court judge Justice Charles Hungwe last week delivered a judgment allowing the firm to provide the service pending confirmation of the provisional order.

He set aside an earlier decision by BAZ cancelling the content distribution licence awarded to Econet Media’s partner Dr Dish (Pvt) Ltd.

Justice Hungwe allowed Dr Dish to enjoy the full benefits of its licence, pending finalisation of the main dispute.

Dissatisfied with the outcome, BAZ through its lawyers T.H Chitapi and Associates, on Monday filed a notice of appeal at the Supreme Court.

In the notice of appeal, the lawyers argued that the High Court had no jurisdiction to preside over the case.

“The High Court erred in not finding that its jurisdiction to deal with the application arising from the suspension or cancellation of a licence was ousted by Section 43(1) (e) of the Broadcasting Act,” the lawyers argued.

BAZ also believes that the court erred in finding urgency in a matter that was far from being urgent.

The broadcasting authority contends that the High Court decision allowing Econet Media to operate without a proper amendment of Dr Dish’s licence was improper.

The High Court, BAZ argued, grossly erred in failing to find that Dr Dish had a more efficacious alternative remedy provided in terms of Section 43 of the Broadcasting Act.

To that end, BAZ seeks an order quashing the High Court decision, with costs.

Dr Dish was in 2007 issued with a licence to specifically provide My TV channels to Zimbabwean viewers, but it struggled to pay the required fees for years.

It also reached a point of failing to provide the service, until BAZ issued a notice of intention to cancel the licence in October last year.

Last month, Dr Dish partnered Econet Media Limited (Mauritius) and paid all the outstanding fees, before notifying BAZ of its intention to add the Kwese TV channels to its list of content.

BAZ received the money, but went on to terminate the licence through a letter dated August 22 this year.

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  • runyararo munhuweyi

    I am convinced there is more than what meets the eye in this story. Here we are; a country continuously pontificating about indigenization, the need to ease how to do business in Zimbabwe, how desperate we are for investment in our comatose economy yet we keep shooting ourselves right in the groin! Who makes these decisions at our regulatory bodies? I suppose its the ‘chefs’, the politicians. Remember Econet’s well documented struggles to be allowed to operate in this land? Its de javu. This is one of a few countries in the world which seemingly prides itself on bringing misery to its own people…..

    • Goritoto LP

      spot on. the funny part though.. “BAZ received the money…”

    • Hacha Duke of Enkeldoorn

      If Strive was a card carrying member of a certain party he would have a broadcasting licence in his own name. When the State has been captured by a political party the operating environment is structured in such a manner that one needs to belong to the political party in order to do business or benefit from Government contracts or licences. Neutrals and opposition aligned business people are viewed as enemies of the State hence they are barred through lopsided laws or outright thuggery (Remember Mashapaidze’s Mbare Matapi project or the water treatment chemicals saga). In short it is anathema for a person who does not belong to the party to get a business opportunity in a sector that the State controls.

  • Moe_Scyslack2

    I’ve read this article twice and my question still remains: Why? Why is BAZ appealing? They don’t want plurality in the broadcasting area? You eat us to be bored to death watching Dead BC and the idiotic propaganda? For real? Have shame.

  • Gary WekuZviyambe

    “BAZ receiived the money, but….”
    This is the Zimbabwe we have now. State agencies just take our money and do NOTHING for us. Typical examples are ZBC & ZTV

  • Gary WekuZviyambe

    Instructions from ZANU-PF

  • wake

    l think sanity is long gone in our government departments. How on could someone try by all means to stop job creation which is being offered.We end up thinking that Kwese did not bribe someone and are being fixed for that.

  • CeeJay

    But why are these people overstretching the people of Zimbabwe to boiling point. Yes were are peace loving people. But is this what we get in return? Why are these lawyers denying Zimbabweans a simple basic need? Are we supposed to take what a few individuals decide for us? I am really heartbroken

  • Mdhinhiwe

    but for the why?

  • loaded

    No one can stop the idea whose time has come.This is ZIm assest why against it-its time for us Zimbabweans to work up and fight for what belongs to US.Why promote DSTV here and we do away with indeginastion. Haaaa-We support Kwese because its from Zim hey

  • watson muzeza

    BAZ manetseka ne Kwese Hey.###Ndo Zim asset zvee iyi kaa-pane imwe inopfuura apa here.Hezvo yauya mochema chema zvee#stopit#stoptit

  • tally moyo

    vakutya Zim asset

  • Cecil Roars

    It is not BAZ contesting the ruling. It is some organisation that you are not willing to name and hence shame it.

  • Hacha Duke of Enkeldoorn

    Kuvhunduka chati kwatara hunge uine katurike. Vanhu ava vane zvipande. Their main fear is the truth. They are terrified that a broadcaster they have no ability to control will tell the TRUTH.

  • Mungandidii

    Whose interests are you serving BAZ. Kwese is for the people and your decision is anti-people.

  • Gamba ReManyika

    I like your dogmatic approach. In this age, you can’t control information flow dear. In fact, the information, communication and technology (ICT) industry is one of the most fluid of all industries on planet earth. All that BAZ is doing is making it difficult for Zimbabweans to get information. Why not make is easy for people to get info and promote diversity?

  • Madara

    what regulations has it not met?

  • Wilson Magaya

    A great mistake on the part of a national authority. There seems to be those hidden meddling fingers that the great Prof Kamba (MHSRIP) alluded to in his speech at the 1992 graduation as vice chancellor. The partnership between Dr. Dish and Kwese may be the quintessential model for doing business in our country which desperately needs to grow a pipeline of startups that get acquired or enter into partnership with large companies thus enabling investment dollars to flow into the country.

    On one hand we clamor for INVESTMENT and with the other we browBeat the BOLD Investor in public view. Surely we don’t expect those watching to put their hard earned dollars into our country Do We? If we do and if we need the investment something has to change fundamentally. Actions speak louder than words and our actions in this case are loud and clear….”Nyika Vanhu, Musha Matare” The people of the Global village are watching and listening let’s be clear about our messages….Sometimes conceding is a sign of strength and clarity of mission..

  • Pastor Farie

    What good can come from Tafataona Mahoso (Chairman BAZ).