Tribunal orders Multichoice to give one-month free subscription to customers and pay N150m fine
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Tribunal orders Multichoice to give one-month free subscription to customers and pay N150m fine

The Competition and Consumer Protection Tribunal (CCPT) on Friday slammed N150 million fine against Multichoice Nig. Ltd. for disobeying its order on subscription rates hike for DStv and Gotv packages.

The tribunal, sitting in Abuja, also ordered the pay television operator to give one-month free subscription to all its Nigerian subscribers on the DStv and Gotv platforms, for flouting its order.

The three-member tribunal chaired by Thomas Okosun, in a ruling, found Multichoice culpable of contempt by flouting its earlier order restraining the pay television operator from implementing hike in its subscription rates for DStv and GOtv.

The tribunal however, mandated that Pay TV operator Multichoice Nigeria provide subscribers on its DStv and GOtv platforms with one month of free subscription.

Additionally, the tribunal imposed a N150 million fine on Multichoice for contesting the court’s jurisdiction after it had recently barred the company from increasing the prices of its subscription packages.

The rulings were delivered on Friday, 7th June, by a three-man panel led by Justice Thomas Okosu.

In April 2024, the CCPT sitting in Abuja, following an ex-parte motion moved by Ejiro Awaritoma, who served as the counsel for the applicant, Festus Onifade, had ordered Multichoice Nigeria to refrain from increasing its tariffs and costs of services that the company was set to begin on May 1 2024.

The order, given by a three-member panel headed by Saratu Shafii, said, “The 1st defendant is hereby restrained from taking any step(s) that may negatively affect the rights of the claimant and other consumers in respect of the suit pending the hearing and determination of the motion on notice.”

However, Multichoice increased its service charge despite the court order, arguing that Onifade lacks the jurisdiction to regulate the prices of goods and services as he is not the President of Nigeria.

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