9Mobile Sales Bid: NCC, CBN Deny Knowledge of Teleology’s $50 Million Payment

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The sale of 9Mobile, Nigeria’s fourth largest teleco, is nearly complete. According to reports by Business Day Newspapers, the preferred bidder, Teleology Holdings, has completed the payment of $301 million needed to take over the teleco.

We had earlier reported the acquisition of 9Mobile by Teleology Holdings after the payment of the non-refundable $50 million. But this deal may be far from completed as NCC’s Executive Vice Chairman, Umar Dambatta, has denied knowledge of the payment.

At a hearing of the House of Representatives, Umar Dambatta, claims to have no knowledge of whose account the payment of $50 million non- refundable fee was made by the preferred bidder, Teleology Holdings.

Although, reports claimed that it reportedly signed a Memoranda of Understanding (MoU) with banking regulator, the CBN, a representative of CBN has also denied the payment of the fund by Teleology Holdings.

As a result of these claims and petitions by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and some of the parties owed by 9Mobile, the House of Representatives committee on Telecommunications, lead by Saheed Akinade-Fijabi, has threatened that the House of Representatives may be forced to stop the ongoing sale of 9mobile to Teleology Holdings.

9Mobile formerly known as Etisalat
9Mobile formerly known as Etisalat

9Mobile (formerly known as Etisalat Nigeria) had defaulted on a $1.2 billion loan obtained from a consortium of 13 banks led by GT Bank. This led to the pulling of the parent company, Etisalat, out of the UAE  and relinquishing its 45% stake in the telecoms company.

The Central Bank had promised to carry out a financial check on the winner of the sale, while the Nigerian Communications Commission would focus on the buyer’s technical competence and quality service to its subscribers.

With the alleged payment of the fee, there seemed to have been hope for Teleology holdings. But with this new development, the completion of the deal might not be as soon as it was expected.

 


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