Nigerian Communication Commission (NCC) may disqualified MTN, Glo, Zain and Etisalat from acquiring any stake in the Nigerian Telecommunications Limited (NITEL) that is being offered for sale by the Federal Government.
The Nigerian Tribune gathered the telecoms regulatory body had sent a memo to the Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE), urging the bureau to avoid giving the giant GSM operators undue market advantage.
It counselled that if NITEL would be sold in bulk to a particular company from among those that had expressed interest, MTN, Glo, Zain and Etisalat should be out of it.
The NCC reasoned that since those companies already maintained yet-to-be matched competitive prowess in the market, especially MTN, Glo and Zain, it would be reasonable to let another competitor get NITEL so as to engender a level of competition that would benefit Nigerians.
“It also said if NITEL will be broken into units, none of the four should be counted qualified to buy Mtel, the GSM subsidiary of NITEL.
“That would look like giving any of them that has that kind of privilege the opportunity to run two GSM networks in the market. That kind of thing will be against the spirit of fair competition,” an NCC source said.
They were, however, allowed to acquire any of the other units that might be made available for them, including SAT 3.
No fewer than 13 tele-communications companies had submitted bids to acquire the 75 per cent equity in the troubled Nigerian Telecommunications Ltd.