Mobile operator MTN Nigeria could lose a number of base stations in Osun State, as the government of the State has threatened to confiscate their equipment following MTN’s alleged refusal to pay $2.4-million in Right of Way permit fees.
Acting chairman and Chief Executive of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), Dayo Oyebanji, spoke about the actions the State could take in order to force MTN to pay the outstanding amount.
“We wish to express our disappointment at the failure of your organisation to fulfil your civic responsibility in respect of this payment despite several demand notices. In this regard, we are therefore left with no other option than to confiscate your base stations in our state provided we do not receive payment on or before the close of business on April 25 to the coffer of the state government.”
The base stations were previously seized on 7 April by the IRS, but was released to the company two days later, after management from MTN intervened. The IRS claims that the mobile operator previously agreed to pay the necessary fees, but later reneged on the deal.
While the demand for fees only came to light recently, there has been no indication whether MTN would be paying the fees, or if the IRS will act on their take-down notice.
Charlie Fripp – Consumer Tech editor