Rabat - The Administrative Court of Rabat will hold a hearing on October 18th for a case against the ANRT’s blockage of VoIP services in Morocco.
Rabat – The Administrative Court of Rabat will hold a hearing on October 18th for a case against the ANRT’s blockage of VoIP services in Morocco.
The case – filed by a citizen in March to challenge the National Telecommunications Regulatory Agency’s authority to block services such as Skype, WhatsApp calling and more – had been denied jurisdiction by the Administrative Court of Oujda in mid-September, according to Medias24.
Article 33 of the Law No. 24-96 regarding the postal service and telecommunications, states that appeals against the abuse of power by ANRT should be directed towards the Administrative Court in Rabat.
The case has been forwarded to that venue and awaits its hearing later this month.
“We will raise the same arguments as we did in Oujda,” said the plaintiff’s lawyer, Mourad Zibouh. “The blockage directly harmed my client and we will demonstrate that.”
The ANRT’s lawyers argued in Oujda that due to telecom companies’ contractual relationship with the agency, only they could file lawsuits against it – not consumers.
So far, none of Morocco’s three major telecom firms – Maroc Telecom, Meditel and INWI, have demonstrated interest in suing ANRT, though INWI withdrew from the Maroc Web Awards in March to protest the agency’s decision.
The agency originally blocked VoIP services in Morocco in January, on the grounds that free IP-based calling services, such as FaceTIme, Viber and Skype, did not hold a license to operate as a telecom entity in the kingdom.