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Court rejects television network's plea to restore cancelled frequencies


(NDIMA/IFEX) - On 5 October 1999, the East African Television Network
Limited (EATN) lost its bid in the High Court, which sought to compel the
Kenya Post and Telecommunications Corporation (KPTC) to restore television
and radio frequencies cancelled on 15 April 1998.


The court also declined to order KPTC from granting the frequencies to
another party.

In his ruling on the company's application, Justice Kasanga Mulwa, a High
Court judge, said the statements made by the EATN lawyer were supported by
an affidavit which, in his view, "rendered the application fatally defective
and cannot be cured by amendment at the stage."

The judge stated that the paragraphs of an affidavit sworn by Sam Shollei in
support of the EATN application could not stand and had to be struck. In the
civil suit, the EATN, which was acquired in 1998 by Africa Broadcasting
Limited, a subsidiary of the Nation Media Group, had asked the
court to intervene and compel the KPTC boss to restore the frequencies for
national radio and television.

Through its lawyer, Peter Le Pelley, the EATN said that the KPTC boss had
acted in excess of his powers by canceling the licences instead of
suspending them as advised by the minister for Information and Broadcasting.

The KPTC, represented by lawyer Kenneth Kiplagat, argued that EATN had
failed to disclose a course of action against the "Post" boss.

Justice Mulwa dismissed the application with costs.


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