Tanzania

Vodacom Tanzania new CEO arrested, likely to face criminal charges

  Vodacom Tanzania head Hisham Hendi

Dar es Salaam

Vodacom Tanzania managing director, Hisham Hendi, may face criminal charges in relation to the alleged fraudulent use of network facilities.

News about authorities arresting Mr Hendi and several other employees of Vodacom Tanzania Plc, started circulating in several social media platforms late on Tuesday.

The Dar es Salaam Special Police Zone Commander, Mr Lazaro Mambosasa, confirmed to The Citizen on Wednesday, saying the issue was being handled by Tanzania Communications Regulatory Authority (TCRA)

TCRA acting public relations manager Semu Mwakanjala said all was set for the Vodacom employees to be arraigned at Dar es Salaam’s Kisutu Residents’ Magistrate Court.

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Arrested

Vodacom, which is listed on the Dar es Salaam Stock Exchange (DSE) also confirmed the arrest of its CEO and several other employees.

“Vodacom Tanzania Plc can confirm that it is fully cooperating with an investigation led by the Tanzania Police Force. Several Vodacom employees, including managing director Hisham Hendi, are being questioned by relevant authorities in relation to the alleged fraudulent use of network facilities,” Vodacom Tanzania said in a statement on Wednesday.

By 1pm Wednesday, no formal charges had been preferred against the Vodacom employees but, like TCRA, the company said it had been informed that they would appear in court on the same day.

The company assured its customers that the issue would have no impact on its service delivery and that it had taken measures to ensure that the company’s operations continue without disruptions.

A week

The case comes about a week since Mr Hendi was confirmed as the managing director for Tanzania’s leading telecommunication company by market share.

Prior to the appointment, Mr Hendi had served as acting managing director since September 2018.

In 2016, Mr Hendi – who holds a Bachelor’s degree in Commerce from the Cairo University – was recruited to lead marketing and sales functions.

He has 15 years of experience in telecommunication industry having worked in various leadership positions in United Kingdom, Egypt and South Africa.

The Egyptian’s appointment at acting capacity came after Ms Sylvia Mulinge, who was appointed in April to succeed Mr Ian Ferrao effectively from June 1 2018 – failed to secure a working permit from the Tanzanian authorities.