Court Stops MultiChoice From Increasing DStv, Gotv Subscription Rates

Following an ex-parte request made by Festus Onifade's attorney, Ejiro Awaritoma, the court granted the temporary order.

A Competition and Consumer Protection Tribunal (CCPT) sitting in Abuja, on Monday, restrained Multi-Choice Nigeria Limited from increasing its tariffs and cost of products and services scheduled to begin on May 1.

The three-member tribunal, presided over by Saratu Shafii, gave the interim order following an ex-parte motion moved by Ejiro Awaritoma, counsel for the applicant, Festus Onifade.

In a decision, the tribunal halted Multi-Choice’s planned price rise schedule, which was set to go into effect on May 1st, while the motion on notice that was filed before it was heard and decided.

READ ALSO: Multichoice Announces Subscription Price Hike on DStv and GOtv

“The 1st defendant is hereby restrained from taking any step(s) that may negatively affect the rights of the claimant and other consumers in respect of the suit pending the hearing and determination of the motion on notice,” Shafii declared.

She, therefore, directed all parties in the suit to appear before tribunal on May 7 at 10 a.m. for the hearing and determination of the motion on notice.

According to the News Agency of Nigeria, Onifade had brought Multi-Choice Nigeria Ltd. and the Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (FCCPC) before the tribunal in the lawsuit with the filing number: CCPT/OP/2/2024. The petition was filed on April 29. Onifade, a lawyer as well, requested two orders. The first defendant, whether acting alone, through her privies, or through assigns by whatever name called, is prohibited from proceeding with the proposed price increase schedule, which is set to take effect on May 1, 2024, until the hearing and resolution of the motion on notice, according to an order of interim injunction issued by this honorable tribunal.

“An order prohibiting the first defendant from acting in a way that could jeopardize the claimant’s and other consumers’ rights regarding the suit until the hearing and resolution of the Motion on Notice.” The other members of the panel are Dr. Umar Duhu and Thomas Okosun. The corporation raised the cost of each of their packages as of April 1, 2022.

At this point, in order to protect consumer rights and advance fair competition, the tribunal’s ruling serves as a reminder of the significance of strong regulatory frameworks and efficient enforcement procedures. It emphasizes the necessity of constant communication and cooperation between regulators, business leaders, and consumer advocacy organizations in order to handle new issues and guarantee that the broadcasting industry works in the best interests of all parties involved.

In the ongoing discussion over pricing policies in the broadcasting industry, the CCPT’s temporary injunction prohibiting MultiChoice from raising its subscription costs is a noteworthy move. Though the ruling offers consumers some short-term respite, it also emphasizes how intricately market competitiveness, consumer welfare, and regulatory monitoring interact. Stakeholders need to be on the lookout for laws and procedures that advance accessibility, affordability, and transparency in the pay-TV industry as the court cases develop.

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button