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The Namibian Broadcasting Corporation (nbc) has fired back at the Namibian Competition Commission (NaCC), labelling the regulator's proposed findings of anti-competitive conduct as "dead on arrival."

This follows the NaCC's accusations that the nbc has been limiting market access for other free-to-air broadcasters on the Digital Terrestrial Television (DTT) Network.

The regulator specifically cited the national broadcaster's suspension of One Africa Television (OATV) from the DTT Network in 2019 over a fee dispute as an example of the nbc's alleged unreasonable and unjustified demands.

The NaCC, in a media statement, pronounced that its investigation concluded that the nbc's actions potentially restricted market outlets, investment, and technological progress, violating Section 26(1) and Section 26(2)(b) of the Competition Act No. 2 of 2003.

In response, nbc Director General Stanley Similo issued a robust statement, condemning the NaCC's actions as premature and harmful.

Similo stated that "the NaCC's highly publicised stance on the nbc's infrastructure sharing policy, particularly as it pertains to other market participants, is ongoing.

Therefore, the nbc considers the premature dissemination of the proposed findings by the regulator to be not only ill-advised but also potentially mischievous and malicious."

Similo emphasised that the public broadcaster has never blocked other broadcasters from accessing its platforms but has sought equitable contributions for infrastructure maintenance.

He criticised the NaCC's position as "dead on arrival," highlighting that the regulatory process is still ongoing and that the nbc has sought clarifications from the NaCC regarding their investigations.

The nbc has 30 days to make written submissions or request oral representations in response to the NaCC's findings.

 

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NBC Digital News

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Daniel Nadunya