Lawyers want court to void N1.04tr fine against MTN

mtnTwo lawyers have filed a suit in the Lagos High Court to stop Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) from further imposing fine on MTN Nigeria.

The lawyers, Oluyinka Oyeniji and Chief Deolu Ogunbanjo, who are both incorporated trustees of National Association of Telecoms Subscribers (NATCOM) and subscribers to MTN, at the weekend, filed the suit against the NCC as first respondent and MTN Nigeria as second respondent, over the N1.04 trillion fine imposed on the telecommunications firm by the commission over SIM card de-activation.

They want the court to compel NCC to account for all the monies it collected from telecommunications operators in the past as fine, and to pay such monies to subscribers as compensation for poor service quality they had suffered in the past

Oyeniji and Ogunbanjo, who are applicants one and two in the case, are calling for an order of perpetual injunction restraining the NCC from further imposing or exerting any fine in respect of registration of telephone subscribers on MTN.

Essentially, the applicants want the court to determine:

• Whether by virtue of Section 53 of the Nigerian Communications Act, 2003 (Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004), the 1st Respondent has granted the 2nd Respondent fair hearing as relating to issues of deregistration of applicants – subscribers;

• Whether by the principle of Nemo Judex Incausa sua and the provisions of the Nigerian Communications Commission (Registration of Telephone Subscribers) Regulations, 2011, the NCC can act as a judge in its own case as relating to the establishment, maintenance and conducting monthly updates of the central database;

• Whether the first respondent has shirked its statutory obligations as contained in Sections 4, 5, 6 & 9 regarding the establishment, maintenance and updates on the central database.

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