MTN Nigeria, on Wednesday, denounced several media reports as “misleading” after they suggested that the company’s services in the country will be disrupted. 

The said reports came on the back of a notice sent by MTN, informing customers of possible service disruptions due to increased insecurity in different parts of Nigeria. 

“Sadly, we must inform you that with the rising insecurity in different parts of Nigeria, service delivery to your organisation may be impacted in the coming days,” MTN wrote in a message to customers. “This means that in some cases, our technical support team may not be able to get to your site and achieve optimum turnaround time in fault management as quickly as possible.”

However, the notice was targeted at select MTN Nigeria’s enterprise customers in a few locations to help them put business continuity measures in place, the local unit of the South African telecoms giant, MTN Group, said in another statement sent to TechCabal.

According to the company, the notice in question was a “routine notification to a small group of businesses affected by a specific challenge in very few specific locations.” These notices are “regularly distributed to partners and are not out of the ordinary,” MTN Nigeria CEO, Karl Toriola, said in the statement.

MTN is “dedicated to delivering the highest levels of service possible, and steadfast in our drive to ensure our customers have the information they need to make critical personal and business decisions and will continue to update them on relevant developments,” Toriola added.

The scale of service disruption is unknown but it is unlikely to affect MTN’s dominance in the local market. According to data from the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), MTN Nigeria accounts for 43% of the country’s internet subscribers and 38% of mobile subscribers.

In the first quarter of the year, MTN Nigeria saw a 21% year-on-year surge in active data subscribers to 32.5 million and a 27% year-on-year increase in smartphone penetration to 36.3 million. The increase in its number of subscriptions propelled strong growth in data revenue, which rose by 43% year-on-year to N106 billion ($257 million) and accounted for 28% of the company’s total revenue.

Apart from the potential service disruption tied to MTN, a nationwide strike of union workers against service providers in the telecommunications industry also threatens to interrupt data and cellular services in Africa’s largest economy.

As reported by TechCabal earlier this week, the Private Telecommunications and Communications Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (PTECSSAN), which comprises senior telecoms staff in the country, said that it would be embarking on a three-day warning strike starting Wednesday to protest the “arbitrary sack of workers and casualisation.”

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Michael Ajifowoke Author

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