FCCPC takes no stance on MultiChoice price hike amid tribunal hearings

On Thursday, the Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (FCCPC) revealed it would not contest the recent subscription price increases for DStv and GOtv by MultiChoice Nigeria Limited.

This position was clarified by FCCPC’s lawyer, Nikiomari Abeke, during a session at the Competition and Consumer Protection Tribunal (CCPT) in Abuja.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reported that the tribunal, chaired by Thomas Okosun, includes three members. Earlier, on April 29, the CCPT issued an order preventing MultiChoice from implementing the price hike scheduled for May 1. This interim order was in response to a motion filed by Festus Onifade, aiming to delay the price increase until a full hearing could be conducted.

The tribunal, led by Saratu Shafii, instructed all parties to convene for a hearing on May 7. Onifade, a legal practitioner, filed suit (marked: CCPT/OP/2/2024) against MultiChoice and the FCCPC, seeking an interim injunction to halt the price increase until the motion was fully addressed.

READ ALSO: Step by step guide on how to activate your GOtv decoder after purchase

MultiChoice’s counsel, Moyosore Onigbanjo, SAN, challenged the tribunal’s jurisdiction, presenting a prior tribunal judgment (suit no CCPT/OP/1/2022) to argue that the tribunal could not revisit the issue. “The tribunal cannot sit in appeal over its own decisions,” Onigbanjo stated, asserting that the tribunal was not the proper venue for regulating MultiChoice’s pricing and services.

Onifade countered that his complaint was not about regulating prices but about the sufficiency of notice given for the price increase. He contended that the 8-day notice provided by MultiChoice was legally inadequate, insisting that monthly subscribers should receive at least a month’s notice.

Abeke, representing the FCCPC, confirmed that the commission did not oppose MultiChoice’s preliminary objection and had not filed any counter-motion.

After hearing the arguments, the tribunal adjourned the case until June 7 for a ruling. This decision will determine the future course of action regarding the price hikes and whether the tribunal can assert jurisdiction over this matter.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You May Also Like