The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) recently condemns, in its totality, the unrelenting attempt by the All Progressives Congress (APC)-controlled federal government to cage the media as being witnessed in the ferocious attacks on Africa Independent Television (AIT) by government agencies, particularly the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC).
The party says it is evident that the attack on AIT is targeted at intimidating and gaging the media, repress constitutionally guaranteed freedom of speech and stifle public opinion, particularly as related to the determination by Nigerians to retrieve the stolen Presidential mandate at the tribunal.
This clamp down on AIT as well as earlier siege on other media houses and journalists under the APC administration, ostensibly point to a plot to frighten and asphyxiate the media, shut down outlets perceived to hold dissenting views and ultimately foist a siege mentality on our citizenry to restrain their demand for fairness and justice in the polity.
The APC is mortally afraid that a free press will raise the red flag and expose its manipulations and any attempt to subvert the course of justice, especially in the Presidential petition, hence this desperation to strangulate the media and cow Nigerians from freely expressing themselves.
Moreover, the PDP invites Nigerians to note that the Director-General of the NBC, Ishaq Modibbo Kawu, is a card carrying member and frontline leader in the APC who was also an aspirant on the platform of the party for the governorship of Kwara state.
The PDP notes that there can be no democracy without a free press. To stifle the media is an invitation to fascism and a return to the era of obnoxious military Decrees 2 and 4, which must be resisted by all.
Our party therefore calls on Nigerians and the International community to unite in condemning this desperation to gag the media and repress free speech in Nigeria.
The PDP also charges the media to remain professional and steadfast in their constitutional role of holding government and its institutions accountable and not be intimidated by oppressive forces that seek to subjugate Nigerians.
Atiku protests closure….
Atiku Abubakar took to twitter to share his reaction to the news regarding the shut down of Daar Communication’s AIT and Ray Power FM following NBC’s suspension of their license.
If, at this time, we stand by as the Press loses its independence, there will be little to differentiate us from a dictatorship. This should not happen. -AA
The Director General of the NBC, Modibbo Kawu stated this Thursday evening while briefing journalists in Abuja that NBC has suspended the license of Daar Communications PLC, owners of African Independent Television AIT and Ray Power FM.
According to NBC, the offences of AIT and Ray Power owned by Daar Communications limited includes the airing of a Presidential election documentary by the AIT, a matter pending before a tribunal, the inability of the company to pay its fees, the use of “divisive and inciting contents from the social media” among others.
The Director General of the NBC, Dr. Modibbo Kawu said the decision was taken for the persistent violation of 2004 broadcasting Code, following persistent warning to the company to tow the line of caution.
BskyB and BenTV crackdown on NTA….
Following the crackdown on AIT and Raypower by the Federal Government, British BskyB has withdrawn NTA from its sky channel 781.Share on Facebook
This was revealed today even as its other carrier BEN TV stops NTAi’s broadcast on its platform
No reason has been given for the removal of NTA from BEN TV and British BSkyB.
Yesterday, the Director-General of NBC, Malam Is’haq Modibbo-Kawu, who spoke on Thursday in Abuja, stated that AIT and Raypower were suspended for failure to abide by Nigerian Broadcasting Code. “In their relationship with the NBC, Daar communications carry on as if it is beyond the regulatory direction of the commission.
“They don’t pay their licence fees as and when due and its broadcast is patently partisan and one sided and deliberately
inciting and heating up the polity.
“The management of the Company has created the habit of using the channel to fight its personal battles contrary to the statutory requirements of the law.
“Recently, NBC monitoring reports onAIT and Raypower indicate the use of divisive comments accredited to the segment of “Kakaaki”, tagged, “Kakaaki Social”, “Where inciting comments like, “Nigeria is cursed, “we declare independent state of Niger Delta”, “Nigeria irritates me”, “this country is gradually Islamising” and other similar slogans are used without editorial control in breach of the broadcast Code.
“Consequently, after several meetings with management of Daar Communications P.l.c and many letters of warning.
“The NBC, today June 6, 2019 took a decision to suspend the licence of Daar Communications Plc for failure to abide by the commission’s directives, the provisions of the NBC Act Cap N11 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria and the Nigeria Broadcasting Code.
“This decision is based on the provisions of Section 10 of the Third Schedule of the NBC Act Cap N11 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004, which states that where in the opinion of the commission the station has been used in a manner detrimental to national interest.
“NBC Act also states that where there is willful or repeated failure to operate substantially as set forth in the licence.
“Where there is willful or repeated violation or willful or repeated failure to observe any provision of this Act or any rule or regulation of the Commission authorised by this Act or by a treaty ratified by the Federal Republic of
“Where there is violation of or failure to observe any cease and desist order issued by the Commission and where a provision of the Nigeria Broadcasting Code has been seriously breached. And the shutdown order is until further notice.”