Nbc Shutdown Of Daar Communications Ait/raypower Fm And Matters Arising
Following the shutdown and withdrawal of AIT/Raypower operating licence indefinitely for repeated violations of the broadcasting code after several formal warnings and apologies to make corrections which they reneged upon, by the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) on Thursday 6th June, 2019, tongues have been wagging with Nigerians and groups expressing divergent opinions on the matter.
However while one regards the recent happening as an unfortunate development within our polity in view of the attendant economic and social dislocation, it is appropriate to situate it within context and not allow the truth and fact to be distorted for political expediency.
One must recognize the fact that we are a country governed by laws for both citizens and corporate entities and the same law prescribes sanctions whenever there is infractions.
The media industry like other industries and sectors in our country is not immuned from being governed by law which is a necessity for order, peace and progress.
Therefore, before a company or media organization can operate, there are some requirements that must be fulfilled, of which there is usually a state agency or institution in charge of this function. For the broadcasting industry, the agency of state saddled with the responsibility of regulating and monitoring the activities of the electronic media is the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) which is a creation of the law with it's functions and responsibilities defined by same laws.
Therefore, one is at a loss to explain why persons and groups should start calling for the head of a state institution for performing it's statutory functions within the ambits of the constitution and nothing more. It's unfortunate that the supporters of the media house in question are trying so hard to obliterate the fact that the broadcasting regulator has carried out this latest decision because of incontrovertible evidences of the infractions of the broadcasting code by DAAR Communications outfits AIT and Raypower FM which it availed the public through it's press release on why it took the course of action that has now generated public interest.
Rather, this supporters believe and want us all Nigerias, to toe their line of thought by pretending to be concerned about the freedom of the press which is not absolute and by the way, no right is absolute lest there be a breakdown of law and order. In this case, what is at stake is national unity and peace which is being harmed and undermined by the reckless, irresponsible and provocative broadcast of hate and divisive contents of DAAR communication, which is of concern not only to NBC, but millions of Nigerians.
To the above school of thought, it does not matter if DAAR communication has been found guilty of repeatedly breaching the National broadcasting code, all they want is for the regulator to look elsewhere and do nothing about the infractions in utter abdication of it's constitutional function which is a gross abuse and irresponsibility.
May we advise Chief Raymond Dokpesi and his organization to tread carefully and stop the resort to propaganda and blackmail against NBC, it wont work , rather they should approach the courts to seek redress if they are convinced that the NBC has acted outside of it's powers as constitutionally enshrined, no more, no less.
The peace, unity and progress of Nigeria is sacrosanct and must never be sacrificed for political expediency and slack enforcement of the law.
The law must be applied at all times no matter whose ox is gored lest our existence as a people be jeopardized. Therefore, we have taken side with the rule of law in this matter.
I am Nelson Ekujumi