“Please Call Me” inventor Nkosana Makate on Monday dismissed claims that a compensation agreement between him and mobile network operator Vodacom has been reached.
“There’s no agreement with Vodacom, it’s a lie. My legal representative went to Vodacom last week and were given an envelope that contains the determination of the CEO. We are still reading the determination,” Makate said in a radio interview.
He also took to Twitter, saying the amount the company had offered was shocking and insulting.
However, Vodacom announced not long ago that it was paying “reasonable compensation” to Makate, who invented “Please Call Me” in 2000 while he was an employee of the company.
“In the spirit of the confidentiality agreement both parties signed, Vodacom will not disclose the amount set by the Group CEO, as reasonable compensation,” Vodacom’s spokesperson Byron Kennedy also told Xinhua.
He said Vodacom considers the matter “as finally settled and closed.”
“Please Call Me” is a brainchild of Makate. It enables customers with a zero balance on their mobile phones to send a “Please Call Me” message to other mobile phones without being charged.
About 140,000 customers used this service on the day it was launched.
Makate was promised a share in the revenue generated by the idea, but this has never been realized.
In April 2016, Constitutional Court ordered Vodacom to commence negotiations with Nkosana Makate for determining a reasonable compensation payable to him for his idea.
Some people, including politicians, have voiced their concerns about Makate’s delayed compensation. On Monday, Communications Minister Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams told the telecommunications giants to “do the right thing.” Enditem