African pay TV group MultiChoice, parent company of digital platforms DSTV and GOtv, has appealed a court ruling that has blocked it from increasing its prices.
The Naspers-owned company was recently taken to court by the Consumer Protection Council (CPC), which demanded that it stop all implementation of its new subscription rates in Nigeria.
On August 23, Justice Nnamdi Dimgba of the Federal High Court in Abuja, ordered the company to halt the tariff hike until further notice.
However, MultiChoice Nigeria has appealed against the ruling and stated that it will continue to maintain the new tariff, describing the ruling as “an affront to the free market economy.”
In a statement, it added: “We have now filed a notice of appeal and an application for stay of execution, pending the hearing of the appeal. The CPC has been accordingly served with the requisite processes.”
In July, MultiChoice Nigeria announced plans to increase its subscription tariff from August 1, citing the nation’s economic situation and costs of maintenance as the reasons for the decision.
Many Nigerians decried the action, arguing that it was effectively “extortion,” and pleaded for government intervention.
MultiChoice is one of the leading broadcasting companies in Nigeria, where it began operations in 1993. Its pay TV services DSTV and GOtv provide video entertainment for subscribers in 49 sub-Saharan African countries.