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.
Backstory: The Director-General of the NBC, Ishaq Modibbo Kawu, disclosed this at a news conference in Abuja on Friday. Kawu said the erring stations, which are spread across the country, had violated provisions of the Nigerian Broadcasting Code and have since been 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 sanctioned accordingly. We gave them the highest level of sanction under the NBC which is to make them pay N500,000 each and they cut across the entire country.”
Kawu added that the “NBC also sanctioned stations that allowed politicians to utter abusive, inciting and provocative statements during rallies.”
According to him, “this happened on several radios and television stations, particularly and unfortunately on the big national networks such as NTA, AIT, Channels, TVC News.”
Kawu warned that any of the stations that continue to broadcast hate and inflammatory comments which threaten the security of the country would be shutdown.
He added that it has become necessary for NBC to issue such warnings as the country moves towards the next elections.
He reminded all the stations which were sanctioned and those which were not to note that the next step the NBC would take will be to close down erring stations.
He said the commission had set up a National Monitoring System involving all members of the board of management of NBC to monitor stations on a 24 hours basis.
He added that the NBC is working in partnership with the Independent National Electoral Commission, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, 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,” Kawu said.