By Phil Wesonga
Safaricom’s market super-dominance which is primarily supported by illegal monopolistic tactics and diabolical predatory lending targeting poor people has driven it to insane profits of Sh63.4 billion in a poorly performing economy where commercial banks and manufacturing industries are closing shop .
If there was any industry that required regulation, besides the gambling industry, it is the GSM services industry. Millions use Safaricom for banking services and the firm holds billions of public money in its network yet it is not under CBK supervision and continue to charge obscenely for its money transfer services, microloaning systems, advance credit, and data services.
While others sectors continue to struggle through fair competition and tough economic times, Safaricom appears to be thriving in profiteering by unethically preying on poor masses enslaved by its monopoly and arbitrary rate setting. What is worse, in each of the various telecom market segments, it has a market share that far exceeds the threshold of 50% that is set by The Competition Act, No. 12 of 2010.
Neither does its substantive foreign ownership which favours foreigners to be CEO at Safaricom.
The overall situation if left as it is poses a serious threat to the socio-economic well being and national security of Kenya.