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NCC holds public inquiry on Visafone transfer of license, spectrum to MTN

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The Nigerian Communications Commission, NCC, has scheduled a date for public inquiry on application by the Visafone Communications Limited to transfer its licence and resources, including Spectrum in the 800MHz Band to MTN Nigeria Communications Limited.

TechEconomy.ng recalls that in the first quarter of 2016, NCC granted the final regulatory approval to the acquisition of Visafone Communications Limited, Nigeria’s surviving Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA) operator by MTN Nigeria.

The deal which was sanctioned in late December 2015 allows MTN Nigeria to utilize Visafone’s 800MHz spectrum to launch fourth generation Long Term Evolution (4GLTE) services.

The move will give MTN edge over other mobile operators as the first major operator to introduce 4G voice telephony (VoLTE).

Visafone is owned by Mr. Jim Ovia, one of Nigeria’s leading bankers, and technology investors. He also owns Cyberspace, an Internet Service Provider (ISP).

MTN is seeking to use Visafone’s 800MHz spectrum to launch 4GLTE. Under the plan, over two million existing Visafone subscribers will be migrated onto the MTN Nigeria network, a development that will now enable them use their voice and data services, anywhere where the latter has network coverage.

However, in accordance with section 57 of the Nigerian Communications Act 2003 (the Act), a public notice signed by the Director, Public Affairs at NCC reads, “NCC hereby gives notice that it shall hold a Public Inquiry in respect of an application by Visafone Communications Limited to transfer its licence and resources, including Spectrum in the 800MHz Band to MTN Nigeria Communications Limited”.

According to information available to TechEconomy.ng, the public inquiry will hold on Monday, June 25, 2018 at its head office located in Maitama, Abuja.

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Interested stakeholders have also been encouraged to make written submission on the subject and participate in the public inquiry.

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