MTN Uganda, Airtel Uganda implement ONAA
By Omondi Julius Odera, Kampala, Uganda
The two leading Ugandan telcos have implemented the One Network Area Arrangement ONAA within East Africa, following a directive from the heads of state of Kenya, Uganda and Rwanda.
The directive from the three heads of state demanded that telco operators charge flat rates and scrap roaming charges in the region. The directive demanded the operators to comply with it by 31 January, failure to which would attract penalties and as expected, the Ugandan market leaders have already heeded to the call.
MTN Uganda has announced that its subscribers can now enjoy flat fees within Rwanda, South Sudan and Kenya. The communication from MTN Uganda to its subscribers indicated that those who make calls to networks within the visited country or make calls back to Uganda will be charged Shs360 per minute.
Part of the statement issued from the telco read: “Our new offer also enables our subscribers to receive calls from Uganda at zero rates while roaming with the under the ONAA arrangement.” At the same line, all MTN subscribers intending to make calls to Kenya, Rwanda and South Sudan will do so at significantly reduced rates of Shs330 per minute. “Furthermore, any subscriber from Kenya, Rwanda and South Sudan will be able to call MTN Uganda’s subscribers at similar rates,” read the statement.
Airtel, which has been giving its subscribers some relief with its offer of 100 free minutes roaming in East Africa per month, has also announced compliance to the new regulations. Airtel Uganda’s public and corporate affairs manager, Sandor Walusimbi, noted: “We were the pioneers of one network in the region where our customers would be charged according to the local rate.” Walusimbi added that Airtel Uganda is introducing a flat rate of Shs350 per minute for those subscribers roaming and Shs330 for Ugandans calling regionally.
ONAA is a directive given late last by the heads of state from Rwanda, Kenya and Uganda. Its aimed at fast tracking the spirit of East African integration and ease cost of doing business within the region.