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Reprieve for subscribers as court stops MultiChoice from increasing DSTV, GOTV tariffs



A temporal reprieve has come the way of subscribers as a Competition and Consumer Protection Tribunal (CCPT) sitting in Abuja, Monday restrained Multichoice Nigeria Limited from increasing its tariffs and cost of products and services scheduled to begin on May 1.

Ripples Nigeria recalls that the company had recently in a message to its subscribers hiked the prices of all its packages.

In a statement titled ‘Price Adjustment on DStv and GOtv Packages’, signed by its Chief Executive Officer, John Ugbe, the company said the increase was necessitated by the rise in the cost of business operations.

The Premium package on DSTV which used to cost N29,500, was hiked to N37,000, while the Compact Plus which currently goes for N19,800, was also increased to N25,000.

Not satisfied, a subscriber, Festus Onifade through his counsel, Ejiro Awaritoma filed a lawsuit before the tribunal.

In its ruling, the three-member tribunal, presided over by Saratu Shafii, gave the interim order on Monday restraining Multichoice from going ahead with the impending price increase pending the hearing and determination of the motion on notice filed before it.

READ ALSO:Reps to probe Multichoice over alleged N1.8tr, $342m unremitted tax

She also directed all parties in the suit to appear before the tribunal on May 7 at 10 a.m. for the hearing and determination of the motion on notice.

The petitioner had dragged Multichoice Nigeria Ltd and the Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (FCCPC) before the tribunal.

In the suit filed on April 29, Onifade, also a legal practitioner, sought two orders.

These include, “an order of interim injunction of this honourable tribunal restraining the 1st defendant whether by themselves, her privies, assigned by whatever name called from going ahead with impending price increase scheduled to take effect from 1st May 2024, pending the hearing and determination of the motion on notice.

“An order restraining the 1st defendant 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.”

By: Babajide Okeowo

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