MTN Group has been informed by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) that the NGN1.04 trillion (USD5.2 billion) fine imposed on its Nigerian unit has actually been cut by 25% to NGN780 billion, and not by the previously stated reduction of 35%. The South African company has been given until 31 December 2015 to pay the fine, which was issued to MTN Nigeria in October, after it failed to meet a deadline to disconnect around 5.1 million unregistered subscribers. After intense negotiations with Nigerian authorities, MTN Group revealed yesterday that the NCC had decided to reduce the fine to NGN674 billion, but today the firm has stated that it received a second letter from the Nigerian regulator, informing MTN that the fine had in fact been cut to NGN780 billion.
In a company statement, MTN said that neither the NCC’s first or second letter sets out any details on how the reduction was determined. The firm added that it its executive chairman Phuthuma Nhleko will ‘immediately and urgently re-engage with the Nigerian authorities before responding formally, as it is essential for the company to follow due process to ensure the best outcome for the company, its stakeholders and the Nigerian authorities, and accordingly all factors having a bearing on the situation will be thoroughly and carefully considered before the company arrives at a final decision.’