Connect with us

Broadcasting

MRA Inducts Voice of Nigeria into FOI ‘Hall of Shame’

Published

on

Media Rights Agenda (MRA) has named the Voice of Nigeria (VON) into its Freedom of Information (FOI) Hall of Shame, accusing it of failing to promote the FOI Act and ensuring its effective implementation as a public service media organisation as well as non-compliance with its obligations under the Act as a public institution.

 

In a statement in Lagos, Mr. Ayode Longe, MRA’s director of Programmes, noted that the Voice of Nigeria, as a national radio station established to inform the world on national issues and developments, should ordinarily be at the forefront of promoting the FOI Act and seeking compliance with the provisions of the Law by other public institutions as this would evidently enhance its performance of its statutory functions as well as enable it discharge its duties with greater ease and effectiveness.

 

He, however, expressed disappointment that the station not only failed to promote the Act or advocate compliance by other public institutions, but has itself refused to comply with its obligations under the Act.

 

The Voice of Nigeria is the second Federal Government-owned media institution to be inducted into the FOI Hall of Shame since the inception of the programme in 2017, following the conferment of the dubious award on the Nigerian Television Authority (NTA) on September 11, 2017 for similarly failing to promote the Act, ensure its effective implementation and for its non-compliance with its obligations under the Act as a public institution.

 

The objectives of the Voice of Nigeria, as provided in the Act establishing it, are to project Nigeria’s positive image externally, to inform the world on national and African issues and developments, to change the perspectives of the world on Nigeria and the black world, to unite Africa and the black world and to engender positive contribution of Africans in the Diaspora to the growth and development of the continent.

 

Mr. Longe said there was no doubt that the institution’s lack of transparency and accountability had eroded public trust and confidence in it, which would affect its credibility and ultimately, its ability to deliver on its statutory mandate.

 

According to him, “being a national radio network broadcasting in seven languages, including English, Yoruba, Hausa, Igbo, French, Arabic, Kiswahili and Fulfulde, the Voice of Nigeria is uniquely positioned to overcome the language limitation that most other media organizations have and be able to promote the Act among Nigerians of different linguistic backgrounds. Instead, this national broadcaster has itself been consistently in blatant disregard of its statutory duties and obligations as a public institution covered by the Act, thereby undermining its implementation and effectiveness.”

 

Mr. Longe stressed that “all public institutions established by Law, including the Voice of Nigeria, are expected to proactively disclose certain types of information listed in Section 2(3) (a) to (f) of the FOI Act, by various means including print, electronic and online sources. But the Voice of Nigeria has not fulfilled its proactive disclosure obligations under Section 2 of the Act as it has not published the itemized categories of information either on its website or anywhere else, as it is required to do by the FOI Act.”

 

He described the failure of the Voice of Nigeria to designate an official of the institution to whom requests for information by members of the public should be sent as well as its failure to proactively publish the title and address of such an officer as an inexcusable breach of the provisions of the FOI Act, particularly in the light of repeated demands by the Office of the Attorney-General of the Federation issued to all public institutions to appoint such officials and send their details to the Federal Ministry of Justice, which is the coordinating institution for matters related to the implementation of the Act.

 

Mr. Longe also noted that although Section 13 of the FOI Act requires all public institutions to ensure the provision of appropriate training for their officials on the public’s right to access information and records held by the government or public institutions as well as to ensure the effective implementation of the Act, the Voice of Nigeria had not organized any such training for its officials since the Act was passed into Law.

 

He observed that over the last seven years, the Voice of Nigeria has consistently failed to comply with its obligation under Section 29 of the FOI Act, which requires each public institution to submit to the Attorney-General of the Federation, on or before February 1 of each year, a report covering the preceding fiscal year of its implementation of the Act. He stressed that the Voice of Nigeria had not submitted any such report for any year since 2011.

 

Mr. Longe said: “Such egregious violation of the clear provisions of the Law by a public institution which should know better is certainly unacceptable. The relevant authorities of the Federal Government must make clear that they do not condone such acts of impunity and take urgent steps to rein in public institutions such as the Voice of Nigeria, which disdainfully disregard the Laws of the Land.”

 

Launched on July 3, 2017, the FOI Hall of Shame spotlights on a weekly basis public officials or institutions that are undermining the effectiveness of the FOI Act through their actions, inactions, utterances and decisions.

 

 

Nigeria CommunicationsWeek believes that technology makes life more exciting and helps improve the lives of people around Nigeria and indeed the world. So since 2007, we have devoted our energy to independent reportage of technology and how they affect lives.

Continue Reading
Advertisement
Comments

Broadcasting

Nigerians Protest DStv Tariff Hike, Urge Govt to Intervene

Published

on

Many Nigerians on Monday decried the announcement by Multichoice that it would increase its subscription rates for DStv packages from August 1.

 

Multichoice in its messages to its subscribers recently, said that it would, however, reduce its rates for Gotv on its satellite platform.

 

The company which recently announced the proposed increment said that its rate for the Dstv Premium package would be from N14, 700 to N15; 800; the Compact Plus would be increased to N10, 650 from N9, 900.

 

It added that the Compact package would be from N6,300 to N6,800; Family package would be increased from N3,800 to N4,000, and Access package would be from would be from N1,900 to N2,000.

 

It, however, said that each of its subscribers on Gotv Max package would begin to pay N3,200 instead of the previous N3,800.

 

It added that each of its subscribers on Gotv Plus, Gotv Value and Gotv Lite subscribers would be paying N1,900, N1,250 and N400, respectively, on monthly basis.

 

Some Nigerians condemned the proposed new rates in their posts on their social media platforms.

 

They said that it would amount to ripping them off of their hard earned money as well as wondered what was responsible for the sudden increase.

NBC_logo.jpg

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reported that a Twitter name Mazi Ubadire was quoted as saying: “I just saw a message on my DStv explorer about an upgrade of subscription from high to higher.

 

“What is the rationale behind this increment of subscription fees on DStv, the company needs to explain.”

 

Akinlade tweeted: “These DStv guys are not ready to do business. After showing the same programmes repeatedly till the subscriber gets tired, they are increasing their subscriptions.”

 

Abiodun Bukola said: “DStv has increased the price for premium again. These guys are bold.

 cpc.jpg

“The question we must ask DStv is how come they cannot change their subscriptions to Pay as you use?

 

“If not for the football channels my husband watches, I would have thrown that decoder in the bin.”

 

Olamipekun Adeshina tweets: “DStv has increased their subscription again, why are these people ripping us off like this and more importantly, why are we quiet? This madness has to stop.

 

“I just received a message from DStv about decreasing my channels by 15.8 (%) per cent. Is it with the new tariff or the old tariff? I don’t understand them.

 

“Is this how DStv will be reaping us up in our own country? Is this obtainable. in other countries where they exist? What happens to our consumer rights?”

 

Zoba Okorie tweeted: “DStv is a liability not an asset. It takes money off your pocket and doesn’t bring back cash flow. So, if you genuinely can’t afford it for now and pay comfortably, don’t get it.

 

“Don’t be pressurised by the internet people. Don’t try to fit in, just be you and leave within your means.’’

 

Blessing Nwanze tweeted: “Even with everyday repeat of movies and programmes, DStv is still increasing the amount of their brochure effective 1 August, 2018.

 

“This is really more money for nothing. Do we have a government? Can this be regulated or the government is on free subscription.”

Continue Reading

Broadcasting

NBC Mulls Sanctions for Broadcast Stations over N4.2Bn Debt

Published

on

Is’haq Modibo Kawu, director general, National Broadcasting Commission (NBC), said that the commission would wield the big hammer on broadcast stations across the nation for their indebtedness to the tune of N4.2billion.

 

Kawu,, who spoke on Monday at the NBC Summit 2018 with the theme “Broadcast Content Development: Deepening Democratic Culture in Nigeria,” organized for broadcast stations which was held in Enugu, said so many broadcast stations are currently indebted to the commission even when the commission was supposed to be generating revenue for the federal government.

 

Bilbis said: “Very soon NBC will begin to sanction broadcast station indebted to the commission. We are supposed to be gerating funds for the federal government, and N4.2billion is a whole lot of money. When we sanction, it’s because we need to sanction.”

 

He further explained that the broadcast stations indebted to the commission comprised both television and radio stations, adding that part of their indebtedness was in the failures to renew their licences with the commission over the years.

 

The event which was well-attended by notable broadcast media practitioners in the country was declared open by Chief Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, Enugu state Governor.

 

 

Continue Reading

Broadcasting

NBC Shuts Down Ekiti Broadcasting Stations Indefinitely

Published

on

National Broadcasting Commission (NBC), has ordered the immediate shut down of the Ekiti state broadcasting service for infractions of the Nigeria broadcasting Code and the Electoral Act.

 

The Commission took this decision after unauthorized declaration of the governorship election results by Mr. Ayodele Fayose, state Governor on the Ekiti State Broadcasting stations.

 

In addition, the Governor went on air to make malicious and unsubstantiated claims against the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), the Nigerian Police and the Department of Security Services.

 

The station will remain shut down till further notice.

 

The Commission had on Tuesday 5th June queried the station’s, Mr. Lere Olayinka, acting director general who is doubling as the spokesman for the PDP campaign organisation in breach of Section 5.2.18 of the Nigeria Broadcasting Code in letters to the Station and the State Government. Both letters were ignored by the recipients.

 

 

Maimuna Jimada, head, Public Affairs, said that the Ekiti State Broadcasting Service on Wednesday 11th July, 2018 was found in breach of sections 5.2.7 and 5.2.8 of the Code for which it was reprimanded and fined N500,000 by the Commission.

 

Jimada, quoted Mal. Is’haq Modibbo Kawu, director general,  as saying that he “wishes to re-emphasize that all broadcasters must adhere strictly to the ethics of the profession in conducting all programmes on their stations in respect to the Nigeria Broadcasting Code, the National Broadcasting Act CAP N11 Laws of the Federation, 2004 and the Electoral Act.

 

For the avoidance of doubt, Kawu hereby draws the attention of all, to the following sections of the Nigeria Broadcasting Code:

 

3.1.2 which states that:

Materials likely to incite or encourage to the commission of a crime or    lead to public disorder shall not be broadcast

 

5.2.15 which states that:

A broadcaster shall broadcast election results or declaration of the winner only as announced by the authorized electoral officer for the election.

 

Broadcasters are hereby also reminded that the Social Media is not an official source for release of election results.

 

The NBC wishes to reiterate that broadcasting stations must ensure proper gate keeping and professionalism in all programmes transmitted on their stations as the Commission would impose severe sanctions for any breach of the Broadcasting Code.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Continue Reading

Trending

Copyright © 2017 Communication Week Media Limited.