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NCC Won’t Allow Investors without Technical Capability, Pedigree Buy 9Mobile- Ojobo

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The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has come out to reassure Nigerians, especially 9Mobile subscribers that only investors with the technical milieu can buy the telecommunications company.

NCC’s message comes on the heels of news that Teleology Holding has emerged the preferred buyer of the telecommunication company.

This was disclosed by the Chief Executive Officer, Mr Boye Onasanya, as Barclays Africa, the financial adviser handling the sale of 9mobile, also transmitted an official letter to Teleology Holdings Limited, confirming it as the preferred bidder in the sale of 9mobile.

According to Olusanya, Teleology Holdings emerged the best bidder in the sale process, while Smile Telecoms Holdings is considered as reserved bidder if Teleology reneges on its bid for the multimillion-dollar company.

Barely 24 hours after the disclosure, a non-governmental organization Business Renaissance Group (BRG), protested against the process, accusing Barclays Africa of sending the letter Teleology in a hasty and preemptive manner.

According to the statement co- signed by its President Mazi Omife I. Omife and its Secretary Dr Funso Akomode, the group stated that Barclays Africa jumped the gun in announcing a preferred bidder.

It noted that in a meeting held with the interested bidders on the 26th of January 2018, Barclays gave the two finalists in the bid process: Teleology Holdings and Smile Telecoms Holdings the opportunity to increase their bid for 9Mobile within 30 days which brought the deadline date to Monday February 26, 2018.

To this end, the Board of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has reassured Stakeholders of its commitment to ensure that the nation’s fourth largest Mobile Network Operator, EMTS/9Mobile, is duly taken over by investors with the requisite technical capability and pedigree to manage the organisation.

According to a statement signed by the Director, Public Affairs, NCC, Mr. Tony Ojobo, “Rising from its Board meeting held in Abuja on Thursday, February 22, 2018, the Board affirmed its determination to avoid the recurrence of any missteps that may have led to the current situation”.

The Board also made it clear that pursuant to the powers conferred on the Commission by the provisions of the Nigerian Communications Act 2003 and other instruments in that regard, the Commission will ensure that all relevant statutory and regulatory processes are duly complied with in the process leading up to the emergence of new owners for the company.

“The Board therefore assured all Stakeholders that the Commission will apply all necessary diligence to see the ongoing sale process through to its logical conclusion in a manner that protects the overall national interest and the seamless operation of the national telecommunications network”, Ojobo said.