A judge in the North Gauteng High Court has overturned an interdict preventing Vodacom from disconnecting the data services it supplies to Gogga Tracking Solutions.
In his ruling, Judge Neil Tuchten cites a number of irregularities in documents Gogga presented to the court and awards all legal costs to Vodacom. He criticises both Gogga and its legal counsel for their conduct during the case.
The judge finds that Gogga had tried to insert additional pages — which had not been sworn in at the beginning of the hearings – into its founding affidavit.
He also notes that Gogga’s founding affidavit states that the Competition Tribunal had found that a prima facie case existed against Vodacom. However, Tuchten says the tribunal found “no such thing”.
Gogga was granted the interdict in July following a prolonged legal tussle with Vodacom. The company filed a complaint against Vodacom with the Competition Commission in February, alleged that Vodacom Service Provider business was engaged in anti-competitive behaviour.
The Commission handed the case to the Competition Tribunal, which dismissed the case. Vodacom was an early investor in Gogga and had provided the company with access to marketing funds and office space in exchange for a stake in its business.
Vodacom has insisted throughout the legal battle that the dispute between the two companies was about Gogga’s unpaid bills with its Vodacom Service Provider business. The network operator says that it cancelled preferential data pricing and other aspects of is deal with Gogga because the company’s accounts were in arrears.
Vodacom SA MD Shameel Joosub says Vodacom has tried unsuccessfully to work with Gogga to address fundamental failings in the company’s business model. “This has been a difficult period for Vodacom and we are pleased that the comments from Judge Tuchten vindicate our actions,” he says. — Staff reporter, TechCentral