Cel*Star accuses GT&T of contract breach
-demands interconnection
Stabroek News
February 4, 2004

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Start up cellular phone company, Cel*Star is accusing GT&T of refusing to honour an agreement to provide it with a connection to its network.

However, Guyana Telephone and Telegraph (GT&T) officials say the issue is now before company lawyers and they do not wish to comment. They had previously expressed concern over court cases disputing the ownership of Cel*Star Guyana Inc.

Cel*Star in a press release says GT&T had stopped all physical implementation work required under the interconnection agreement signed with it five months ago.

Interconnection is a standard practice whereby telecommunication companies join up their networks to provide customers with seamless service.

Cel*Star contends that GT&T's argument for the need to have the proceedings over transactions involving former business associates resolved prior to work resuming, is totally irrelevant to the issue of interconnectivity.

"GT&T is required by law to perform under the interconnection agreement unless and until the agreement is proved invalid. But nothing in the foreign proceedings can or will invalidate the interconnection agreement," Cel*Star's Chief Operations Officer, Pierre Strasser is quoted as saying.

Strasser added that GT&T's actions are a breach of contract and said that direct contact with the company has been unsuccessful in resolving the issue.

Cel*Star is now contemplating other actions to ensure GT&T complies with the agreement.

According to Cel*Star, it would be able to begin service three months after GT&T recommences interconnection implementation work.

GT&T's Chief Executive Officer, Sonita Jagan at a press briefing on November 11 had alluded to concerns over the ownership of Cel*Star and the court proceedings as causing the interconnection to be put on hold.

Legal counsel for the company further advised GT&T that it should abide by any court ruling resulting from the current challenges in Florida and the Cayman Islands.