THE Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has agreed to reduce MTN’s fine to $3.4bn, payable no later than December 31.

MTN said on today it had received the formal letter from the commission on Wednesday and was “carefully considering” a reply.

“The 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 … all factors having a bearing on the situation will be thoroughly and carefully considered before the company arrives at a final decision,” the company said.

MTN Nigeria had originally been fined $5.2bn by the commission for failing to deactivate 5.1-million unregistered SIM cards on its network.

Nigeria is MTN’s biggest market with 62-million customers, followed by South Africa.

Separately, MTN announced a shake-up of its senior management structure in an effort to strengthen oversight, governance and regulatory compliance across its operations in 22 countries in Africa and the Middle East.

MTN’s Nigeria head Michael Ikpoki and the head of regulatory and corporate affairs Akinwale Goodluck have resigned with immediate effect, MTN said.

The company named Jyoti Desai, a 14-year veteran of the Johannesburg-based firm, as chief operating officer with effect from December 1. Mr Desai’s replacement as group chief technology and information officer will be announced soon, MTN said.

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