- More troubles await the Ekiti State Broadcasting Service (EBS)
- The EBS is likely to face more sanctions if it fails to pay a N500,000 fine slammed on it within the stipulated period
- The broadcasting service displayed recklessness by allowing its platform to be used to announce official election results
The National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) says it will impose a higher sanction on the Ekiti State Broadcasting Service if it fails to pay N500,000 fine within the stipulated period.
The NBC spokesperson, Maimuna Jimada, made the disclosure in a telephone interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN).
“Time frame to pay up a national broadcasting fine is 14 days. If they don’t pay within that time, they will get a higher sanction. Meanwhile, the station remains closed till further notice," she said.
According to the official, EBS on Wednesday, July 11, breached Sections 5.2.7 and 5.2.8 of the Nigeria Broadcasting Code and was reprimanded and fined N500,000 by the commission.
NAN reports that NBC also shut down the station on Sunday, July 15, for infractions on the code and the Electoral Act. The commission said on its website that it shut down the station following unauthorised declaration of Saturday’s Ekiti governorship election results by Governor Ayodele Fayose on the station.
The commission added that Fayose made malicious and unsubstantiated claims against the Independent National Electoral Commission, the police and the Department of Security Services.
The NBC said that it had, on June 5, queried the station’s acting director-general, Lere Olayinka, over breach of Section 5.2.18 of the code, and the query ignored.
It said that all broadcasters must adhere strictly to the ethics of the profession in conducting all programmes on their stations in respect to the code, the National Broadcasting Act, 2004, and the Electoral Act.
According to the NBC, social media is not an official source for release of election results.
It said that broadcasting stations must ensure proper gate-keeping and professionalism in all programmes transmitted on their stations, warning that the commission would impose severe sanctions for any breach of the code.
NAN reports that Section 5.2.15 states that a broadcaster shall broadcast election results or declaration of the winner only as announced by the authorised electoral officer for the election.
Section 3.1.2 of the code states that materials likely to incite or encourage commission of a crime or lead to public disorder shall not be broadcast.
Meanwhile, Rivers state governor, Barrister Nyesom Wike, has declared that what transpired during the Ekiti governorship election is the worst political robbery in the nation's democratic history.
The governor made the comment on Sunday, July 15, at the Anglican Cathedral Church of Saint Paul, Port Harcourt during the Thanksgiving Service to mark the end of third year anniversary celebration of his administration.
“I have never experienced that kind of robbery in politics. I told my colleagues, do not give them any chance. Most of them in APC are happy that they will repeat the same thing in Rivers state, we are waiting, come and repeat. Let your spirit not be down, work hard and victory will be ours,” he said.
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