By Bayode Sipasi
The National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) has sanctioned 45 broadcast stations, including NTA, AIT, Channels and TVC News, for alleged ethical infractions in relation to the 2019 general elections.
Is’haq Modibbo Kawu, the Director-General of the commission, who disclosed this at a news conference in Abuja on Friday, said the erring stations, which cut across the country, violated provisions of the Nigerian Broadcasting Code, and were fined N500,000 each.
“Despite our various interventions, at the end of the Presidential election which was held on 23, Feb. 2019, 45 stations were found culpable of infractions on the provision of the Nigeria Broadcasting Code and have been sanction accordingly.
“We gave them the highest level of sanction under the NBC which is to make them to pay N500,000 each and the cut across the entire country.
“NBC also sanction stations that allowed politicians to utter abusive, inciting and provocative statements during rallies.
“And this happened on several radios and television stations, particularly and unfortunately on the big nation network such as NTA, AIT, Channels, TVC News.
“There are also several radio and TV stations involved in this various infraction.
“Only recently J FM for instance in Jos, Plateau State was sanction for inciting broadcast by a preacher, who move away from religion into the arena of politics and was saying particularly inciting comments,” Kawu said.
The NBC boss warned that any of stations that continue to broadcast hate and inflammatory comments that threaten the security of the country would be shutdown.
He said it had become necessary for NBC to issue such warning as the country move to the next elections.
Kawu said the commission had set up a National Monitoring System involving all members of the board of management of NBC to monitor stations on 24 hours basis.
“We monitored all the broadcast in every single Radio and Television and all our licences. We monitored exactly the way people performed during the elections.
The DG said NBC was working in partnership with INEC, the EFCC, and Nigeria Financial Intelligence Units on tracking campaign financing in the country.
“It is a very vital part of deepening the democratic process and it is important for us to mention this as we move to the next elections.