LAGOS – ATC Nigeria has confirmed that Smile Communications Nigeria is not indebted to it. To affirm Smile’s non-indebtedness, ATC has also withdrawn it’s earlier disconnection notice.
Apparently, reacting to the Pre Disconnection Notice published by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) concerning Smile Communications Nigeria, ATC confirmed the payment of all legacy amount due from Smile Communications to ATC Nigeria.
In a letter dated 18 December ATC Nigeria notified NCC that it had withdrawn the Notice of Disconnection. According to a very reliable source close to both organisations ATC request to NCC was premised on the payment of all legacy amount due to ATC by Smile.
Sources from both confirmed confirmed that whatever was outstanding related to exchange rate differentials which is very minimal and late payment fees which is being contested. Both organisations are currently exploring new Tower Agreement that will be naira denominated and would be mutually beneficial to support Smile Communications Nigeria long term rollout plan.
It should be noted that the legacy debts from most Operators to Tower Vendors mostly arouse as a result of the devaluation of the naira by over 40% in 2016 which brought about a significant increase in Tower lease rental, considering that the Tower Agreements were denominated in dollars. Moving to a Naira denominated contract will ensure sustainability of telecommunications’ business and facilitate expansion of Broadband services across the country to fuel economic development and social engagement.