The Senate on Thursday agreed to investigate an allegation that telecommunication giant, MTN Nigeria, repatriated 12 billion dollars out of the country over a 10-year period. The resolution followed a motion moved by Sen. Dino Melaye (APC-Kogi) who relied on a point of order to make the allegations.
The Senate asked Melaye to present documents at the next legislative day showing evidence of the transfer for immediate investigation. Melaye had alleged that the South Africa-owned company had taken away over 12 billion dollars from Nigeria in the last 10 years.
“My respected colleagues, MTN Nigeria paid a sum of 284.9 million dollars on the 6th of February, 2001, to purchase their licence of operations in this country.
“Between 2006 and 2016, through four Nigerian Banks and a serving minister of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, MTN moved over 12 billion dollars out of Nigeria.
“That is about half of our external reserves. “If I get the nod of the Senate I will want to bring a substantive motion on the next legislative day with substantiated facts to buttress this position,” he said.
Recall that MTN was involved in a dispute with the Federal Government over the non-registration of 5.2 million subscribers in 2015. The government subsequently imposed a fine of N1.04 trillion on the firm but later reduced it to N330 billion after negotiations but the company has paid N50 billion of the agreed sum.