MTN withdraws application against NCA

Chief Executive Officer of MTN Ghana, Selorm Adadevoh

Telcom giant, MTN Ghana, has withdrawn an application against the National Communications Authority, over the regulator’s moves to reduce its market share.

“We wish to withdraw the application for further stakeholder consultation. We formally withdraw the application” the company’s legal counsel, Samuel Cudjoe, told the Supreme Court.

The application was to appeal the Accra High court judgment that held that the NCA did not breach any law in their procedure to establish that MTN’s dominant player status is unfair.

That ruling by Justice Samuel Asiedu gave greenlight to the NCA to proceed with ‘corrective’ measures to address the imbalances.


Photo: Communications Minister, Ursula Owusu

The court held that from the evidence provided the court, MTN could not claim that the regulator did not give the company a fair hearing before arriving at the decision to classify the telco as a ‘Significant Market Player’.

That status triggered moves by the NCA to clip MTN’s wings.

The court also said it was premature for MTN to proceed to court without first exhausting internal processes for redress. It said MTN Ghana should have applied for a review at the NCA after which it could then come to court if it was still dissatisfied.

MTN Ghana signalled it would challenge the judgment. But at the Supreme Court Tuesday, the company’s lawyers indicated a u-turn.

Reacting to the decision to withdraw the application, legal counsel for the NCA, Gary Nimako, said the move as a “good step.”

He said in the light of evidence that the NCA and MTN had been engaging as far back as 2014, the telco’s argument in court that it was not given a fair hearing “was not the best approach.”

Gary Nimako

He encouraged MTN to engage the regulator and find an “amicable” solution.

Background

The Ministry of Communications on June 9, 2020 announced that the telecommunication industry was facing “glaring disparities” and “imbalances” which it said was unhealthy for competition.

It said MTN held 75% of the market share while three other telcos, AirtelTigo, Vodafone and Glo to scrabble over 25%.
The Communications Ministry said it would be using the Electronic Communications (EC) Act 2008 and the National Telecommunications Policy to address the “imbalances”. The Ministry said the move should not be seen as a punishment, but a correction.
The MTN Ghana CEO, Selorm Adadevoh, called the government’s move “unfair” and said the decision to go to court, was a “difficult” move and “a last resort” taken “after much consultation.”

Leave A Reply

Your email address will not be published.

You might also like