Warns online TVs, and other broadcast stations to register or risk disconnection

Hands over Provisional licenses to 67 newly licensed stations

The National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) has given 30 days to foreign broadcasters who have offices in Nigeria and beam their signals into the country to come forth for registration. The Commission also called on all the Internet Protocol Television (IPTV) and all other broadcast stations that are streaming online to register with the Commission to avoid disconnection and prosecution. Director General of NBC, Mallam Balarabe Ilelah who gave the warning while handing over provisional licences to 67 newly approved licensees yesterday in Abuja, said that Broadcasters should note that, having a Digital Terrestrial Television (DTT) or FM license does not warrant a broadcaster to stream online as they are two different licenses. Ilelah stated that NBC is determined to collaborate with security agencies to clamp down on illegal broadcasters in the country and reminded licensees that are yet to pay their outstanding debts to hurriedly pay or have their licences revoked for illegal broadcasting. He observed that refusal to pay license fees is economic sabotage and the Commission will have no option but to collaborate with security and anti-corruption agencies to redeem the debts. The NBC boss noted that the approval of 67 additional licenses by President Muhammadu Buhari is a testimonial that the President yearns for media pluralism and freedom of expression and urged the implore new licensees to complement the gesture by promoting the nation’s democratic values, national unity and cultural heritage. He said, “You are also required to reciprocate the gesture by putting the license into use within the timeframe provided and act responsibly and in accordance with the Act, Code and other extant laws guiding broadcasting in Nigeria. Pay attention to safeguarding the peaceful coexistence of Nigeria through your broadcast. This is in addition to promoting and sustaining Nigeria’s diverse culture by ensuring diversity in programming content for Nigeria’s widest audience. The most important however is to promote Nigerian content and encourage the production and projection of Nigerian life, hence trying to achieve 100% local content. Ilelah pointed out that part of the requirements for the commencement of test transmission henceforth is for new licensees to send their staff for training at the newly established Nigeria Broadcast Institute.

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