SA’s Communications Minister Tells Vodacom To ‘Just Shut Up ‘

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Minister of Communications
Minister of Communications

South Africa’s communications minister Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams said on Monday that Vodacom should “just shut up” and pay the Please Call Me Inventor, Nkosana Makate.

The minister took to Twitter on Monday morning to lambast Vodacom for poor public relations stunts regarding the settlement of Makate.

In 2016, the Constitutional Court ruled that Vodacom must pay Makate as the inventor of the Please Call Me service and that if negotiations failed, Vodacom CEO Shameel Joosub must determine a “reasonable amount”, MoneyWeb reported at the time.

On Monday, Ndabeni Abrahams tweeted:

Her tweet was a response to a Vodacom reply on Twitter to a tweet from Panyaza Lesufi. Gauteng education, tweet on Saturday

On Saturday, EWN reported that Makate has denied claims by telecommunications giant Vodacom that they’ve granted him a reasonable payout for his invention.

Makate alleges that Vodacom stole the idea from him while he was an employee of the company.

He said: “I haven’t reached any deal with Vodacom, I was dumped with some determination that the deal was done. We are reviewing that and we will be taking it up further.”
Nkosana Makate
Nkosana Makate
Vodacom’s spokesperson said that the group CEO Joosub has met with the legal representatives of Makate and Vodacom to convey his decision and determination as directed by the Constitutional Court order but that in the spirit of the confidentiality agreement both parties signed as part of the negotiating process, the amount set as reasonable compensation by Joosub will not be disclosed.

The battle has been drawn for more than 10 years and the settlement negotiations have still not yielded any positive results.

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