The Secretary General of the East African Community (EAC), Dr Richard Sezibera, has commended ongoing discussions to abolish telephone roaming charges in the region.
His comments follow reports that Heads of State could abolish roaming charges in October.
“I am happy that the discussions are ongoing. I sense renewed momentum from the public and private sector to turn East Africa into a one network area. This will bring down the cost of doing business but also promote business in the region,” Sezibera said on Friday.
This week, Kenya’s Information, Communications and Technology (ICT) Cabinet Secretary, Fred Matiang’I, said the presidents of Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Burundi and Rwanda will converge in Kampala, Uganda on October 9 to endorse the waiver of the roaming charges.
Discussions have centred on doing away with the inter-connectivity fees charged by service providers for calls and data originating from another country.
If implemented, calls from Rwanda to other EAC partner states will be charged at local rates. The waiver will see calling rates in the region drop by 60 percent.
Sezibera on Friday paid a courtesy call on Prime Minister Anastase Murekezi following the latter’s recent appointment to, among others, brief him on developments in the bloc.
“We took the advantage of this to brief him on where we are on EAC integration,” the EAC chief said.