The Chairman of the Northern Broadcast Media Owners Association (NBMOA), Alhaji (Dr) Ahmed TijjaniRamalan, has called on the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) to review Section 15.2.2 of the Nigerian Broadcasting Code for an acceptable process that will allow for transparency in the sanctioning procedures while adopting a two-layer level of implementation and imposition of sanctions as is done by the Advertising Practitioners Council of Nigeria (APCON), which is also a regulatory body under the same Federal Ministry of Information.
AlhajiRamalan also urged the Commission to temper justice with mercy by waiving the fine of N5m imposed on Nigeria Info as a first offender under the new Code addendum. It would be recalled that the NBC recently fined Nigeria Info 99.3FM the sum of N5 million for broadcasting alleged hate speech in a recent interview it conducted with a former Central Bank deputy governor, Obadiah Mailafia.
The NBMOA Chairman commended the federal government for the revolutionary and positive clauses introduced in the 6th amendment of the Nigerian Broadcasting Code and for the growth and development of broadcasting in line with global standards.
He also commended the revolutionary steps in creating the Public Service Broadcasting (PSB) Act intended for public benefit free from political and commercial interference, which “shall derive its funding from public funds, that is, first-line charge of the federation account, corporate and individual donations and grants by Nigerian entities, among others.”
While briefing the Board of the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) on sundry issues affecting the operations of broadcast stations in the Northern parts of the country, AlhajiRamalan also emphasised the determination of his association to cooperate with the NBC Acting DG for the full Implementation of the NB Code.
Specifically, he called on the Chairman and Board of the NBC to submit to the inputs and regulation by the Federal Ministry of Information in respect of the controversial Addendum to the 6th amendment of the Nigeria Broadcasting Code (NB Code) and work with all stakeholders to further review the grey areas in the Addendum to the Code in no distant future.
The NBMOA Chairman said, “subject to the provision of the NBC Act, the Minister may give the Commission directives of general character relating to particular matters with regards to the exercise by the Commission to its functions, and it shall be the duty of the Commission to comply with such directives.