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Shareholder Questions MTN Nigeria Directors’ Pay Amid Company Losses

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During the Annual General Meeting (AGM) in Lagos, a shareholder named Olushola Makindipe raised concerns over the hefty paychecks allocated to MTN Nigeria’s directors for 2024. This inquiry comes in light of the telecom giant’s substantial losses in 2023, leading to a lack of dividends for shareholders.

Makindipe pointed out that the proposed remuneration for directors did not align with the current economic challenges facing the company. Despite previous reports indicating significant losses due to inflation and currency devaluation, the resolution at the AGM fixed annual fees for directors at $36,000 for the Chairman and $24,000 for each Non-Executive Director.

At the MTN Group level, directors, including MTN Nigeria CEO Karl Toriola, received similarly substantial compensation in 2023.

Expressing dissatisfaction, Makindipe emphasized the need for austerity measures to be implemented across all levels, including the board. He suggested that board members should consider reducing their compensation to better reflect the company’s economic situation and the shared burden among stakeholders.

In response, CEO Karl Toriola defended the directors’ compensation, stating that it was competitive and necessary to attract and retain qualified individuals for governance roles. He highlighted the extensive commitment of board members to oversee the company’s operations, particularly during challenging times.

Toriola outlined strategic measures to mitigate market volatility and recover from forex challenges, including reducing capital expenditure and restructuring contracts to lower costs. He stressed the importance of tariff adjustments for industry sustainability and assured shareholders of ongoing efforts to restore dividends in the future.

Despite acknowledging industry-wide challenges, Toriola expressed confidence in MTN Nigeria’s ability to navigate the current economic climate and emerge stronger.

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