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Price Fixing: PoS operators risk three months imprisonment, says FCCPC

The Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission has said Point of Sale operators caught for price fixing risk three months jail term.

This is as it issued a cease-and-desist order to PoS operators from conduct that constitutes an infringement of the law.

PoS operators under the umbrella of the Association of Mobile Money and Bank Agents Nigeria fixed new prices for PoS transactions on July 17.

On July 19, 2023, it was reported that the FCCPC would issue an order to stop PoS agents from fixing withdrawal prices.

According to the commission, PoS operators that are found in violation of the order will pay N10m for corporate entities; and N1m and or a prison sentence of up to three months for individuals.

The FCCPC, in a statement signed by its Executive Vice Chairman/Chief Executive Officer, Babatunde Irukera, on Monday, said, “The Commission advises PoS operators that violation of an order of the Commission attracts additional consequences apart from the underlying illegal conduct that is the subject of the order such as up to N10,000,000 for corporate entities; and N1,000,000 and or a prison sentence of up to three months for individuals.”

The commission noted that it was not seeking to limit the ability of PoS service providers to determine and set prices for services in a manner of their choosing subject to Section 127 of the Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Act 2018, which prohibits manifestly unjust or exploitative prices.

Olojo noted that AMMBAN has written to the FCCPC and explained its position.

 He said, “We are not also taking out the fact that prices cannot remain the same. Fuel price is not the same; transportation price is not the same. There is nothing that is the same. So, the FCCPC cannot force an enterprise to sell at a loss. I think their interest is whether we are fixing prices, and AMMBAN is not fixing prices and we are advising our members to remain competitive without charging beyond a certain point.”

He further stated that the association was committed and open to working with the Federal Government and its institutions.From the Punch Newspaper

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