Nigeria Court restrains 5 telecoms firms

LAGOS — A Federal High Court sitting in Lagos, yesterday, restrained five telecoms firms from suspending All Progressives Congress, APC, campaign fund-raising platform.

Trial judge, Justice Ibrahim Buba made the ex-parte order following an application by the party.

The telecom companies effected by the order include Etisalat, MTN, Glo, Airtel and Visafone.

They were restrained from giving effect to a directive by the Nigerian Communications Commission, NCC, which warned them against running political promotions that will portray them as being partisan.

The judge ordered the telecoms firms “to continue to run, operate and/or restore to its full operative use the SMS Code platform 35350 created for fund-raising for the applicant’s presidential campaign.”

The court also granted APC leave to serve the originating motion on notice and other processes on NCC outside the court’s jurisdiction.

APC had argued that the platform was to operate till February 12, when campaign activities for the presidential election were to stop in line with Electoral Act and the election time-table.

APC is also demanding N25 billion damages from the defendants for violating the fundamental rights of the party and its members.

It is contending that since the platform was suspended, it has been unable to disseminate or receive information from its supporters via the SMS code 35350.

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