THE Postal and Telecommunications Regulatory Authority of Zimbabwe (Potraz) has warned that those operating unlicensed postal and telecommunications services will be punished by the country’s laws.

The warning follows revelations by United States-based political activist Freeman Chari that he has set up communications devices in 72 mountains across the country.

In a statement, Potraz director-general, Gift Machengete, said only local licensed operators are permitted by the authority to distribute satellite- based internet services if their virtual network operator (VNO) agreements have been approved by the regulating authority.

“Potraz regulates the provision of postal and telecommunications services in Zimbabwe. The mandate of Potraz includes licensing of postal and telecommunications service providers and enforcement of compliance with licence conditions and applicable laws for the sector. The licences are issued in terms of the Postal and Telecommunications Act [Chapter 12:05] (The Act), as read with the Postal and Telecommunications (Licensing. Registration and Certification) Regulations, 2021,”

 “The public is further reminded that local licensed operators are only allowed to distribute satellite-based internet services if their VNO agreements have been approved by the Authority,” he said.

The Citizens Coalition for Change is accusing the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission of election fraud through releasing “fake results” in favour of Zanu PF.

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A Team Pachedu sympathiser and technology entrepreneur Chari revealed that they have installed devices across the country to collate results from the recent election.

Machengete added that operating a telecommunication device without a valid licence certificate or authorisation from Potraz was “a statutory offence punishable at law”.