South Sudan shuts largest telecom operator Vivacell over tax dispute

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South Sudan’s largest telecom operator Vivacell has been shut over tax dispute.

Information minister and government spokesman Michael Makuei Tuesday confirmed that Vivacell had failed to pay over $60 million taxes since it inception, hence the drastic action.

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He said Vivacell was ordered to cease operations for its failure to conform to the government rules and regulations.

The National Communications Authority (NCA) last week issued a public notice ordering the suspension of the Vivacell operations, saying the firm had failed to conform to the state laws and regulations.

Vivacell responded in short notice to the public, describing the decision as an ”unfortunate event” that had caused inconvenience to its customers both inside and outside South Sudan.

“Vivacell regrets this unfortunate event in our operations and the inconvenience it has caused to our valued customers,” the statement read.

“We are expeditiously working with the relevant authorities to have the matter resolved and we are confident that our operations shall continue across the country.”

Vivacell’s entry into South Sudan was facilitated by former secretary-general of the ruling party SPLM/A Pagan Amum.

Most of it’s shareholders are top government officials.

////The East African

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