South African telecommunications giant MTN has denied owing Cameroonian authorities, contradicting the claim of the government agency which accused the telco of failing to pay taxes on games and gambling services.
According to Reuters, Cameroon’s National Anti-Corruption Commission (CONAC) said the local units of MTN and France’s Orange owed the country nearly $166 million in unpaid taxes.
“MTN Cameroon is not and has never been implicated in corruption-related actions, in the exercise of its activities,” MTN said in a statement on Thursday.
Cameroonian authorities have also accused MTN of benefiting from illegal tax breaks worth nearly $40 million.
“It is our position that we are in full compliance with these tax matters,” MTN spokesman Chris Maroleng told Talk Radio 702.
MTN is already contesting a $3.9 billion fine in Nigeria for failing to disconnect users with unregistered SIM cards, which can be used for criminal activity – a growing concern in Nigeria given the threat of the Boko Haram sect.
MTN, Africa’s largest mobile operator, gets about 37 percent of its revenue from Nigeria.
Shares in MTN dropped 5.1 percent to 111.62 rand, lagging a 0.6 percent fall in the benchmark JSE Top-40 index.