Togo’s leading mobile operator, Togo Cellulaire (Togocel) lost its court case against the telecommunications regulator ARCEP for infringing the non-differentiation rules (inter- and intra-network tariff differentiation) and not for unfair competition, the Supreme Court of Togo said on Monday, in a judgment case that shook the industry and made national and international headlines.
Therefore, Togo’s highest court uprightly rejects the mobile operator’s appeal case and upholds the fine of FCFA1 billion fine (about $1.85 million) imposed by ARCEP.
“ARCEP did not sanction for anti-competitive practices but rather for a violation of the non-differentiation clause falling under article 23 of its specifications,” the Supreme Court pointed out in the capital Lomé.
“Togocel’s case for annulment for excess of power is admissible in the form, but the Court declares it ill-founded and rejects it,” said Akpénè Djidonou, president of the SC’s Administrative Chamber said, dismissing the company’s case.
The decision marks a historic turning point and reaffirms the role of the Regulatory Authority as the guarantor of the respect, by the operators, of their specifications and the protection of rights and consumer interests, the regulator said in a statement.