Paradise TV yesterday published on its Twitter page that there is a new entrant to The Gambia GSM market.
It reported that the unnamed company is owned by “Gambians in business and with expertise in the telecoms sector”.
According to a person with knowledge of the Gambian telecoms, threats have been made to the PURA management and its director-general as well as the minister of communications who approved the licence.
We could not verify this claim as the PURA DG declined our request for an interview citing health reasons.
The Standard could not also reach the communications minister Ebrima Sillah and officials at the ministry said he was away on vacation.
The insider alleged that there is “a cartel” in the Gambian telecoms sector that “colludes on pricing and other [thing]s and this is why the customers are suffering without any recourse”.
He added: “We hope the government will stand up with the citizens and ensure the market is free for entry and that no one should have too much control over the sector. President Barrow swore to protect his citizens and we are sure he will deliver on his second term as he has a huge mandate and support from the citizens. We salute these brave citizens and the professional staff at PURA who are risking everything to make things better in the sectors they control. We are starting to see the dividend and strong regulatory enforcement which is bringing in much-needed revenue to the government and breaking up monopolies and ensuring compliance.”
Neither the tweet from Paradise nor the industry insider could tell The Standard when the new GSM licensed company will begin operations in the country.
The current telcos are the government-owned Gamcel, Africell, Comium and QCell. Currently, Africell dominates the market with QCell following.