President Muhammadu Buhari has appointed Mr. Balarabe Shehu Ilelah, a veteran broadcaster, as the substantive Director-General of the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC). He replaces Prof. Armstrong Idachaba who was appointed Acting Director General of the Commission in February 2020 following the suspension of Mallam Is’haq Modibbo Kawu.
Announcing the appointment in a statement on June 11, 2021, the Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed said Balarabe’s appointment is for a tenure of five years in the first instance.
A graduate of Bayero University Kano, Balarabe had worked with NTA Bauchi before leaving Nigeria for the then Soviet Union as a journalist. He has also worked with the BBC World Service.
Balarabe is a politician, and chieftain of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC). He ran for Bauchi South Senatorial seat under the APC platform in 2019 but lost to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidate.
Prof. Idachaba on the other hand, a professor of Mass Communication, was the Director, Broadcast Policy and Research in the Commission when he was appointed to replace Modibbo Kawu. He had also served as the Director of Broadcast Monitoring, Director Research and planning, Zonal Director Abuja, Lagos, Umuahia and Uyo Zones of the Commission.
Prof. Idachaba holds PhD in Media Studies and has written over 40 international and local publications. He has also lectured in the Mass Communication Departments of Nasarawa State University, Keffi; Bingham University, Abuja and the Nigerian Institute of Journalism, Abuja.
He has worked as an Artiste/producer at the Nigeria Television Authority (NTA), produced several films, and was feature writer at the Voice Newspapers before joining the National Broadcasting Commission.