Channels Television has been fined N5 million by the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) for violating broadcasting laws during a programme with the Vice Presidential candidate of the Labour Party, Datti Baba-Ahmed. The commission’s Director-General, Balarabe Ilelah, signed a letter addressed to the television station’s Chief Executive Officer, which was obtained by the News Agency of Nigeria on March 27.
In the letter titled “Broadcast of an Inciting Interview, A Sanction”, Ilelah stated that the NBC monitored a live interview with Baba-Ahmed by the anchor of Politics Today, Seun Okibaloye, on March 22. During the interview, Baba-Ahmed stated that it would be unconstitutional to swear in an elected president on May 29, 2023, due to election irregularities.
Ilelah deemed the broadcast “volatile” and capable of inciting public disorder, which violated some sections of the broadcasting code. He went on to say that Channels Television has been sanctioned and must pay a penalty of N5 million in the first instance. Any further infractions by the television station would result in higher sanctions.
The NBC Director-General also advised Channels Television to pay the penalty within two weeks from the date of receipt of the letter, or the penalty would be graduated.
The letter read in part, “The NBC monitored the broadcast of a live interview of the running mate of the Labour Party Vice presidential candidate, Dr Datti Baba-Ahmed, by the anchor of Politics Today, Seun Okibaloye, on Wednesday, March 22.
“Dr Baba-Ahmed said it will be unconstitutional to swear in an elected president on May 29, 2023, because of election irregularities.”
He noted that the broadcast was volatile and capable of inciting public disorder, violating some sections of the broadcasting code.
“Consequently, on the following infractions, Channels Television is hereby sanctioned and shall pay a penalty of N5,000,000 (five million naira) only in the first instance,” he said.
He added that any further infraction by the television station would attract higher sanctions.
“You are advised to pay within two weeks from the day of receipt of this letter or the penalty will be graduated,” the NBC Director-General said.
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