South African telecoms company, MTN, is negotiating with the Nigerian government for a possible reduction of a N780 billion fine imposed on the firm, President Muhammadu Buhari said Tuesday, Premium Times reports. At a joint news conference with South Africa’s President Jacob Zuma, who is on official visit to Nigeria, Mr. Buhari said the talks could also agree on a payment schedule.
The fine, imposed by the Nigeria Communications Commission in October 2015, has been a subject of controversy for months. The commission initially asked MTN to pay N1.04 trillion for failing to disconnect 5.1 million unregistered subscribers, but later reviewed the sum to N780 billion. The telecoms company has yet to pay the fine. In January, MTN took legal action, challenging the powers of NCC to issue the fine.