Average revenues for Internet service providers (WISPs) who responded to the Wireless Access Provider’s Association (WAPA) survey (76% of all members) exceed R3 billion, employing 2 785 people and serving more than 200 424 home and business customers.
South Africans who work from home, study online and try to keep their businesses alive rely on connectivity, without which it all ends. “Digital loadshedding” is small-fry compared with digital fratricide. ICASA is effectively snuffing the concerted and, quite frankly, miraculous efforts of so many businesses, workers and students, who have survived lockdown using nothing but cellular connectivity, by reclaiming 5G spectrum from the mobile networks.
“We’ve got a long history of working flat out for the industry. Probably the biggest benefit for most of the new WISPs is the training we offer, the regulatory advice from our specialist lawyers, and the forum for technical advice, because it helps them get their businesses up and running quickly and effectively,” says Karel Venter, deputy chair of WAPA and volunteer at the non-profit.
The Wireless Access Providers Association (WAPA) is in the process of renewing its Secretariat contract as part of a good governance process. The new contract will be to run the Secretariat function from July 2019 to June 2024 (5 years). There will be a probationary period for 6 months. The contract will then remain in place as long as the key performance indicators are met based on a 6 monthly review process.