General News of 2014-05-20

Sports ministry to drag telcos to court

Citi Business News has gathered the Ministry of Youth and Sports may drag telecom giant MTN and some other telcos to court over current world cup promotions they are running on their networks.
According to the Ministry of Youth and Sports, per an agreement reached between the ministry and the telecom operators, they cannot embark on any World Cup promotion on their networks.
The ministry, earlier this year, launched the “text and win” promotion designed to raise funds to sponsor supporters to Brazil to cheer the Black Stars at the World Cup.
Proceeds from the promotion are expected to be used to aid football fans to travel to Brazil to support the stars.
Government has asserted it cannot sponsor football fans to the competition because it is not in a position to do so.
The ministry says despite receiving some financial support from corporate entities including SIC, GCB, ADB, Zenith Bank and others to sponsor supporters to the event, it will need more cash.
It is for this reason that it initiated the promotion to enable it take more supporters to Brazil to support the Black Stars.
But the ministry says MTN and some other telecom operators breached the agreement reached between them and are currently running such promotions.
The ministry is scheduled to meet the regulator of the telecom industry, the National Communications Authority (NCA), over the matter this week.
Sports minister Elvis Afriye Ankrah says the ministry may hit the courts over the matter.
‘The telcos especially MTN are running big promotions, so effectively we cannot compete with them, they are drowning us. We are considering various options, we are meeting with the NCA tomorrow and we are considering going to court at a future date because we had an understanding that we will use their platform to raise money, but after we launched our promo, they also launched theirs and their promo have swallowed ours so we will have to find ways to resolve the matter,’ he said.