Fidelity bank card banner Emerald Energy Institute Camano banner

Infractions: MTN practically blackmailed Nigeria into reducing its $330m fine — Ex-Comms Minister Shittu

By Tony Akowe, Abuja on 07/06/2019

Gmail icon

Views: 237

•Ex-Minister for Communications, Barrister Shittu
•Ex-Minister for Communications, Barrister Shittu

Immediate past Minister for Communications, Adebayo Shittu, on Thursday, explained that Mobile Telecommunication Network (MTN) Nigeria practically blackmailed the Federal Government into reducing the over $330 million controversial fine imposed on it by the Nigerian  Communications Commission (NCC).

The Minister said the company told President Muhammadu Buhari if they were made to pay the fine, they might have to shut down operations in Nigeria and sack all their Nigerian workers, which may have negative impact on the banking sector.

He said they also threatened to withdraw their deposits with which some Nigerian banks were doing business.

Speaking with newsmen in Abuja, the former Minister denied report that he took bribe from the company to influence the reduction of the fine.

He also stated Nigeria did not work for the money the company was supposed pay as fine.

He also explained Buhari acted in national interest in authorising reduction of the fine, adding that it would have been wrong to create an impression that there was no ease of doing business in Nigeria

He said: “A lot of blackmailers have been blackmailing me that I took money. Even if I wanted to take money, the opportunity never arose because the file on the MTN crisis never got to my office and I never had a role to play.

“If you know the workings of the Ministry and its agencies, you will realise that each of its agencies has its separate laws.

“Remember the NCC laws predate the establishment of the Ministry of Communications. The NCC laws took care of any supervisory role the Ministry would have played which is the role of policy formulation and not operational engagement.

“NCC has a Board which takes care of implementation.

“I did not have a role to play in the implementation but what happened was that MTN, as an international company, cried out to the President to say that if they had to pay the amount of fine imposed on that at that time, they are likely to close shop and there will be consequences.

“The consequences included that all Nigerian staff of MTN will lose their jobs, all the banks they operate with will have serious upheaval in term of the fact that they will have to withdraw their money from Nigeria an some banks will be in a state of near collapse if that happens.

He added: “Thirdly, recall that Nigeria invited them to come and invest in Nigeria. If we give the impression that there is no ease of doing business in Nigeria or that government will rush to “kill” foreign companies in Nigeria, other foreign companies we are inviting to come and invest will not come.

“So, because of the intervention of the international community, the President had to wade in to reduce the cost and he did that in consonance with what happened in the court system. What the President did was to play the role of an appeal platform in reducing that cost.

“Even in reducing that cost, conscious of the fact that in MTN itself, heads had to roll because it was an act of negligence that more than 5 million subscribers were not captured. But for Nigeria, I would say that the 330 billion Dollars is money we have not really worked for.

“It is unfortunate that MTN violated the laws and we are not saying they should continue to violate the laws. When they did, sanction was imposed on them and I didn’t think Nigeria should regret the reduction of the fine.” (The Nation)


Source News Express

Posted 07/06/2019 05:21:47 AM





You may also like...
Golden Eaglets star Success Isaac joins Italian giants...

Kaduna: Death toll in Gwaska massacre rises to...

Nigerian nurse who killed baby after circumcising him...

El-Rufia orders investigation of NNPC fuel station fire,...

Flood ravages 46 communities in Abia, kills 2...

Davido you do well o!

Delta Speaker congratulates Atiku, lauds Okowa for successful...

CBN licenses 11 new International Money Transfer Operators...

Umeh demands repeat of election in troubled areas...

NDLEA discovers N20m worth of Indian Hemp

Nigerian Army retires 31 Generals

2018, year of hope, says Dickson •Reads Riot...


Latest News 3 suspected kidnappers shot dead Border closure: Compromise and go to jail, Customs CG warns officers Kaduna Govt rubbishes audio of alleged killings along Kaduna-Abuja highway Bandits kill 6 people in Kaduna •See names of victims Agency DG, Accountant in EFCC net for alleged diversion of salaries Kogi poll: PDP accuses Gov. Bello of purchasing PVCs FEC approves N166bn for repair, construction of 14 Federal roads Lagos passport office extends work days Ex-health minister arrested over Ebola funds We’ll make UNILAG Africa’s top four by 2022 — VC COZA: Why Nigeria Police should stop harassing Pastor Fatoyinbo — Rights group EFCC storms hideout, arrests 11 suspected Internet fraudsters


Most Read NUDE PHOTO OF OMOTOLA JALADE-EKEINDE surfaces online (539,814 views) Nigerian female sex addict opens up, says ‘I like it with both men and women’ (442,651 views) Shameless Genevieve Nnaji exposes breasts in public (388,869 views) Finally named: The full list of friends of Nigerian female sex addict who prowled Facebook (326,392 views) OLUMBA OLUMBA OBU (the one who called himself God) IS DEAD (294,321 views) Igbo scholar disgraces Femi Fani-Kayode •Demolishes claims on Igbo/Yoruba history with facts and figures (253,479 views) Breaking News: POPULAR REVEREND CONVERTS TO ISLAM in Kaduna (Nigeria) (249,473 views) 10 cars more expensive than Jets (238,093 views) OBJ’s son reported dead in Lagos plane crash •Names of more victims emerge (231,229 views) My wasted years in Olumba Olumba Obu’s Evil Brotherhood (217,227 views) Lagos plane crash: Journalist releases victims’ names (195,643 views) THE FINAL DISGRACE: Igbo scholar unleashes more facts about Igbo/Yoruba history, finishes off Femi Fani-Kayode with second article (193,280 views)


CBN milk production

CBN banner advert

UBA Wise Savers Promo


Categories Advertorials (3) African Press Organisation (81) Art & Literature (102) Business & Economy (4,443) Business Verdict (80) Columnists (1,108) Complaints & Requests (96) Enterprise & Opportunities (215) Entertainment (661) Features (806) Global Business Monitor (441) ICT Monitor (63) International (3,944) Interview (203) Live Commentary (30) Love Matters (170) Maggie's Blog (410) News (51,291) Opinion (1,355) Pidgin (17) Politics (11,438) Religion (1,102) Sports (2,166) Stock Watch (39) AMA & Al Jazeera Global Update







APO Group Partner




GOCOP Accredited Member

GOCOP Accredited member



Africa Media Agency and Al Jazeera