MTN Nigeria condemns xenophobic attacks

By Kokumo Goodie, Lagos, Nigeria

MTN Nigeria has strongly condemned the raft of xenophobic attacks unleashed on migrants in South Africa, arguing that they are not justifiable.

The telco said to help assuage the pain of victims, it is offering financial support to transit camps where victims are temporarily housed.

Corporate Services Executive at MTN Nigeria, Akinwale Goodluck the carrier was particularly concerned by the fatalities that have come with the attacks.

Goodluck, who spoke with ICT Editors at the Falomo Awolowo Road, Ikoyi Lagos office of the telco, noted that the attacks were not a state-sponsored act and that they were limited to certain parts of the country. They were as a result of poverty and illiteracy, he said.

He said there was no basis for reprisal attacks on the telco as MTN in Nigeria should be seen purely as a Nigerian business, with the majority of its workers from Nigeria – including CEO Michael Ikpoki.

He said over 6,000 Nigerians are employed as permanent workers by MTN Nigeria. About one million others work along the value chain, taking care of their families.

According to Goodluck, MTN which has over 60 million subscribers in the country, is the second largest tax payer to the Federal Government, adding that it has transited from being a telco to being a business enabler to the economy as demonstrated by the massive support it offers the financial sector of the economy by deploying its infrastructure to power the millions of automated teller machines (ATMs) across the country, helping to realise the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN’s) financial inclusion drive.

“MTN has invested $15 billion over the past decade to build infrastructure in Nigeria and expended another N10 billion on its corporate social responsibility (CSR) through the MTN Foundation that has supported the provision of health services to complement government’s efforts,” he said.

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