MultiChoice, which owns DStv and SuperSport, has filed papers in the high court in Pretoria against communications regulator Icasa over its inquiry into sports broadcasting rights, The Star newspaper reported on Wednesday.
According to the newspaper, MultiChoice has that warned Icasa’s proposed regulation of sports rights could put the company out of business. The court application was filed on Monday.
The company wants the court to compel Icasa to provide “all the information, evidence and research” that underpins draft findings published on 12 April.
Icasa is holding public hearings this week in Pretoria on the draft sports broadcasting services amendment regulations, which were published on 14 December 2018.
It received 39 written submissions, with 28 interested parties scheduled to provide oral representations before its councillors.
“The review of existing regulations is common within the regulatory environment, and this process is no exception. As developments happen and new information come to the fore, Icasa is required to re-look the relevance of its existing regulations and where necessary initiate a process for the review of such regulations,” the authority said in a statement ahead of the public hearings.
“This review is intended to identify and list national sporting events while ensuring that subscription broadcasting service licensees do not acquire exclusive rights that prevent or hinder the free-to-air broadcasting of national sporting events, in accordance with … the Electronic Communications Act.”
Icasa’s sports broadcasting regulations were last reviewed in 2010. “We are of the view that they require regulatory attention, hence the consultation process,” Icasa said. — (c) 2019 NewsCentral Media