By Salisu Sani-Idris
The National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) has imposed a N5 million sanction, each, on Multichoice Nigeria L.td., owners of DSTV, TelCom Satellite L.td., (TSTV and NTA- Startimes L.td., for the carriage of the documentary by the BBC Africa Eye titled, “bandits Warlords of Zamfara.”
The Director-General of the commission, Malam Balarabe Ilelah, in a statement on Wednesday in Abuja, said that the documentary glorified the activities of bandits and undermines National Security in the country.
Ilelah also said that the Trust-TV Network L.td., was also fined N5 million for its documentary titled: “Nigeria’s Banditary-The inside story.”
” While appreciating the need of educating, informing, and enlightening the public on issues bordering on developments and happenings within and outside the country, the commission wishes to seize this opportunity to advise broadcasters to be circumspect and deliberate in the choice and carriage of contents deleterious to Nigeria’s National security.
” Consequently, the airing and carriage of these documentaries, contravened the provisions of the Nigeria Broadcasting Code, Sixth edition, especially, the underlisted Sections:
” 3.1.1: no broadcast shall encourage or incite to crime. lead to public disorder or hate, be repugnant to public feelings or contain offensive reference to any person or organization, alive or dead or generally be disrespectful to human dignity.”
The D-G said that broadcaster should not transmit a programme that incites or likely to incite to violence among the populace, causing mass panic, political and social upheaval, security breach and general social disorder.
” Section 3.11.2 of the code said that the broadcaster shall ensure that law enforcement is upheld at all times in a manner depicting that law and order are socially superior to, or more desirable than crime or anarchy.”
He explained that the imposed penalties on affected broadcast media platforms and station was to be remitted not later than Aug. 30, 2022.
He warned that failure to comply with that would lead to the imposition of a higher sanction as provided in the Nigerian Broadcasting Code.
The NBC boss, therefore, enjoined broadcasters to be instruments of national unity and desist from falling into antics of using their platforms to promote and glamorize subversive elements and their activities.
” Every broadcast station or platform is responsible for the content it transmits or transmitted on its platform, and shall be held liable for any content in violation of the Nigeria Broadcasting Code.” (NAN)