Bloomberg News

Ghana Orders MTN to Halt SIM Card Sales Over Poor Call Quality

December 04, 2012

Ghana’s National Communications Authority ordered MTN Group Ltd. (MTN)’s unit in the West African nation to stop adding new users because quality on its network “continues to deteriorate.”

“NCA has engaged Scancom Ltd., on several occasions, on the issues of quality of service degradation,” the Accra-based agency said in a statement on its website, referring to the company’s Ghanaian unit. “In spite of these engagements, network performance on MTN continues to deteriorate.”

MTN, which said it reached 11 million subscribers in the country of 25 million people in September, is Ghana’s biggest mobile-phone network operator. The stock pared gains to trade 0.3 percent higher at 166.32 rand by 12:02 p.m. in Johannesburg after rising as much as 1.7 percent.

Georgina Asare Fiagbenu, spokeswoman for MTN in Ghana, said in a mobile-phone text message that she was in a meeting and another official would comment later.

The directive from the Ghanaian agency takes immediate effect, according to the statement. Vodafone Group Plc (VOD), Bharti Airtel Ltd. (BHARTI) and Millicom International Cellular SA (MIICF:US) also operate in Ghana, which has West Africa’s second-biggest economy.

To contact the reporter on this story: Ekow Dontoh in Accra at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Emily Bowers at

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    (Millicom International Cellular SA)
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