AFRINIC The bank account of the African Regional Internet Registry, AFRINIC, has been frozen

In an on-going legal battle between Cloud Innovation Ltd and AFRINIC, the latest update is that AFRINIC's bank accounts have been frozen. In an email sent to the members list, the Chair of the AFRINIC Board of Directors, informed the members about this latest update.

Ish Sookun

1 min read min read
AFRINIC Public Policy Meeting at the Africa Internet Summit 2019, Kampala, Uganda
AFRINIC Public Policy Meeting at the Africa Internet Summit 2019, Kampala, Uganda

In an email addressed to its members, the Chair of the AFRINIC Board of Directors, Subramanian Moonesamy, informed that AFRINIC was notified by one of its banks that its accounts have been temporarily frozen due to legal action by one of its resource members, Cloud Innovation Ltd.

The past few weeks have been rough between Cloud Innovation Ltd and AFRINIC, each accusing the other of malpractice, misunderstanding terms of agreement and breach of the Registration Service Agreement (RSA).

At the beginning of July, the CEO of AFRINIC, Eddy Kayihura, informed the community of AFRINIC's decision to reclaim the number resources of Cloud Innovation Ltd and to terminate its membership. An email from the address tech@cloudinnovation.org was sent to the AFRINIC community-discuss mailing list on the 14th July 2021. The email was not signed by any particular person representing Cloud Innovation Ltd. It informed that an urgent interim relief has been granted to Cloud Innovation Ltd by the Supreme Court of Mauritius to prevent AFRINIC from reclaiming their number resources. The email provides a timeline of communication between Cloud Innovation Ltd and AFRINIC regarding the « breach » of the Registration Service Agreement.

On the 15th July 2021, the AFRINIC CEO, informed the community that AFRINIC had received an order by the Supreme Court of Mauritius to reinstate the membership status of Cloud Innovation Ltd. He stated that his team was in process of reversing the change.

In his email communique, Subramanian Moonesamy assured the AFRINIC resource members that alternate means of funding have been identified following a urgent meeting of the Board of Directors the previous night. He assured that the company can cover the financial expenses incurred to run its services.

The AFRINIC members list is a private mailing list. However, one member copied the community-discuss public mailing list when replying to S. Moonesamy's email. Paul Wollner, a candidate who lost in the recent Board Election, questioned the source of funding.