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Monday, February 29, 2016

SIM Card fine: NCC confirms receipt of N50bn ‘good faith’ deposit from MTN



The Nigerian Communications Commission, NCC, has acknowledged the receipt of the sum of N50,000,000,000 (Fifty Billion Naira Only), towards the settlement of the fine imposed on MTN Nigeria Communications Ltd by the Commission, reports ITRealms.

The Director, Public Affairs at NCC, Mr. Tony Ojobo informed ITRealms that this was also in line with MTN law suit No FHC/1923/2015 – MTN Vs. NCC & HAGF which has since been withdrawn and was received as ‘good faith’ deposit.

He also told ITRealms that the official information to the Commission to that effect, was received from the Office of the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, today, 29th February, 2016.

“The amount is an unconditional good faith payment, on the basis that this sum would be applied towards eventual settlement agreement for payment of the fine imposed by the Commission, where the ongoing negotiations between the Federal Government and the company, reaches a final resolution,” he explained.

Ojobo also said that the Federal Government’s team for the negotiations is being led by the Honourable Attorney General of the Federation, and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami (SAN), while MTN team is led by former U.S Attorney General, and Head of Covington & Burling LLP, Washington DC, Mr Eric H. Holder, Jr.

The receipt of the amount and withdrawal of the suit, he said, is without prejudice to the final decision of government on the terms of payment being proposed by the company.

On the basis of out of court settlement, Ojobo emphasized that the Federal Government team, is expected to deliberate on the merits and demerits of the terms of payment of the fine imposed on MTN by the Commission for its failure to deactivate invalid SIM Cards as directed by the Commission, thereby contravening the provisions of the regulation on SIM Card Registration.

Chuks Egbuna/GEE

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