The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has ordered the suspension of MTN Group dividend payment from the Nigerian subsidiary of the telecommunications giant, until further notice.
In a quarterly update to shareholders, MTN Group said it was not guilty of the illegal repatriation charges levelled against it by the Nigerian senate, stating that the claims are totally unfounded and without merit.
Addressing the latest developments on the alleged illegal repatriation of $13.97 million by the Group, MTN said the CBN had ordered the four commercial banks operated by MTN to suspended dividend payout from Nigeria.
“MTN Nigeria, four commercial banks, certain MTN Nigeria directors and shareholders, the Central Bank of Nigeria and others appeared before the Senate on 20 October 2016 at the outset of this investigation,” the update read.
“The allegations are that $13.97 billion was repatriated illegally by MTN Nigeria through its bankers. MTN Nigeria and its bankers are cooperating with the investigation with a view to resolving the matter as expeditiously as possible.
“In the interim, the CBN has instructed the banks to suspend any remittance of dividends until further notice. MTN Nigeria continues to refute the allegations that MTN Nigeria had improperly repatriated funds from Nigeria.
“Consequently, MTN Nigeria will strongly defend any action that would be prejudicial to its interest. MTN Nigeria has no intention to make any dividend payments over the next six months.”