THE National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) has fined Raypower FM the sum of N500,000 as a sanction for the “provocative, inflammatory and divisive comments” made by anchors of political platform, a current affairs programme aired on the radio station.
A statement issued on Saturday by NBC’s Head of Public Affairs, Maimuna Jimada, noted that the comments were against the NBC code.
Jimada stated that the Commission had held two meetings with authorities of DAAR Communications, owners of Raypower FM, to bring to their notice the excesses of the political platform crew and charged them to be fair and balanced in their reportage.
“The Political Platform episode on July 24, was marked by sensational and heated expression of opinion by its anchors, who went on to make unproven and inciting allegations,” Jimada said.
“For avoidance of doubt, the Director-General drew the attention of DAAR Communications to the following provisions of the Nigeria Broadcasting Code: (1) Section 1.9.3:
“A presenter/anchor shall not express his or her personal opinion in a programme.”
“Also Section 5.2.7: ‘A broadcaster shall, in using political material for news, avoid taking inflammatory and divisive matter in its provocative form and Section 5.2.5 stated that political broadcasts shall be in decent language.”
Raypower FM is the sister radio station to Africa Independent Television (AIT), both subsidiaries of DAAR Communications Limited, founded by Raymond Dokpesi, a chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
Dokpesi is currently standing corruption trial before the federal high court, Abuja, accused of receiving N2.1 billion from Sambo Dasuki, former National Security Adviser (NSA). The money was said to be part of the $2.1 billion that was meant for armed purchase, but which the federal government accuses Dasuki of embezzling.