'Please call me' complainant set to hear verdict today

Former Vodacom employee Nkosana Makate who claims to have come up with the “please call me” idea and is demanding payment from the company‚ will on Tuesday hear if he is entitled to get paid for his idea.

Makate took Vodacom to the Constitutional Court last year claiming millions of rands from the company for his contribution in developing the popular “Please Call Me” idea.

The Constitutional Court will on Tuesday morning deliver judgment in the matter.

Makate had to convince the court that Vodacom’s then director of product development Philip Geissler had ostensible or apparent authority to enter into an agreement with him on behalf of the company. He claimed that the “Please Call Me” service was based on his idea‚ and he is entitled to payment in accordance with an oral agreement he concluded with Geissler in November 2000.

 The service‚ introduced by Vodacom in February 2001‚ allows prepaid cellphone users to send a message for free to other users asking to be called back.

In 2014‚ the high court in Johannesburg dismissed Makate’s demand for payment.

 It found that although Makate had‚ on a balance of probabilities‚ entered into an agreement with Geissler‚ he could not prove to the court that the agreement was binding to Vodacom.

 The court also found that the claim had prescribed.

 In terms of the Prescription Act‚ a claim is said to have prescribed or to have been extinguished after a period of three years from the date on which it arose if not claimed.

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