Legal proceedings instituted by Turkcell against MTN Group Limited and other companies in the group
Jun 7, 2018
MTN continues to defend itself in the long-running litigation where Turkcell is claiming damages against MTN as a result of MTN having acquired a 49% interest in Irancell Communication Services Company ("Irancell"), which was awarded the second GSM License in Iran in November 2005.
On 1 June 2018 representatives from South Africa’s Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation visited both MTN and MTN’s external legal counsel to obtain documents relating to aspects of the Turkcell litigation pursuant to MTN’s original self-reporting of this matter and the Turkcell complaint. MTN is cooperating fully with this investigation.
MTN remains of the view that Turkcell's claim is opportunistic, an abuse of the process of Court, baseless and without merit.
When the allegations made by Turkcell were first raised, MTN appointed an Independent Special Committee under the Chairmanship of the eminent international jurist, Lord Leonard Hoffmann, to investigate the allegations. Lord Hoffmann embarked upon a thorough and exhaustive analysis of the investigations. He found that Turkcell's allegations, which rested entirely upon the evidence of one Mr Christian Kilowan, were all 'a fabric of lies, distortions and inventions'; and that Mr Kilowan was shown to be 'a fantasist and a conspiracy theorist'.
Lord Hoffmann was also very clear in finding that he was entirely satisfied that there was no conspiracy between MTN and Iranian officials to remove Turkcell from the licence process in Iran, that there were no promises made to procure the South African government to supply defence equipment to Iran or to support Iran's nuclear policy, nor that MTN had advanced sham loans to its Iranian partners, nor indeed that any promises of payment to Iranian or South African officials were made or authorised by Mr Nhleko or Ms Charnley.
The case in South Africa is the fifth time that Turkcell has attempted to pursue legal proceedings in respect of substantially the same issues. Turkcell's four previous attempts, including proceedings before reputable international arbitration panels, failed. The ongoing attempt to re-litigate complaints that Turkcell have repeatedly litigated without success are contrary to the interests of justice. To the extent that Turkcell may contend that any new issues have been raised in their summons, these issues were considered and disposed of in the Hoffmann Report. The Directorate for Priority Crime Investigations have been provided with a full copy of the Hoffman report together with the detailed annexures.
- Issued by MTN Group Corporate Affairs
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