MTN Nigeria Limited is facing yet another court battle but this time as the plaintiff in a civil suit against the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and the office of the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) at the Federal High Court of Nigeria. The company claims that it made the move in order to protect its Nigerian assets and shareholders’ rights within the confines of Nigerian law.
The suit was filed by MTN due to allegations by the CBN against the company, as well as four commercial banks which were issued fines in respect of the administration of the CCI and irregular dividend repatriation, and has requested that an aggregate sum of $8.1 billion be returned “to the coffers of the CBN”. On the other hand, the AGF Abubakar Malami has alleged unpaid taxes on foreign payments and imports against the company and demanded that approximately $2.0 billion in relation to these taxes be paid to the Federal Government of Nigeria. He has also now directed that the payment of the $8.1 billion should be dealt with through his office rather than as directed by the CBN, which the company is questioning.
With the surmounting claims and allegations, the company which has begun to feel threatened has sought an injunctive relief from the Federal High Court to restrain both the CBN and AGF from proceeding further with their orders. Still upholding its stand that it has committed no offenses, the company announced that it will continue to vigorously defend its position against any government officials attempting to bully it, and has cautioned Shareholders to deal with company securities’ carefully pending further information on the matter.