Stakeholders Call for Probe in NBC’s issuance of Broadcast Licences[Documents INSERTED]

by on June 3, 2019

Coalition Against Corruption and Bad Governance (CACOBAG) a Non-Governmental Organisation and other stakerholders in the industry has called on President Muhammadu Buhari to probe NBC’s issuance of broadcast licenses. This is contained in an advertorial and court affidavit made available to Breaking Times by a Source.

Corruption is a national malaise, which continues to jeopardize the development, and deteriorate the progress of Nigeria. Anti-corruption is a prime agenda of President Muhammadu Buhari administration. But there are evidences that state apparatchik engage in brazen acts of corruption in the present administration.

According to Transparency International, corruption is defined, as “the abuse of entrusted power for private gain. It can be classified as grand, petty and political, depending on the amounts of money lost and the sector where it occurs.” Nowhere is this true than at National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) and the presidency where officials have been inculpated of using their offices to engage in licence racketeering.

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The Director General of NBC, Is’haq Modibbo Kawu in connivance with key staffs at the presidency stand accused of having used their privileged positions to allocate prime slots of radio licence to themselves and cronies. There is need for government to probe the award of licences by the NBC and ensure that officials do not engage in acts of corruption and perpetrators brought to book. The specific allegations against the DG and those working at the presidency are so weighty that they cannot be dismissed. There is no other way to dwarf Nigeria’s progress other than allow government officials act with impunity and abuse their positions for private gain.

Radio and TV licences are crucial to the development of the Nigerian media and such corrupt acts in NBC will defeat that aspect of our development. Licences should be given to companies that meet the guidelines and requirements not fictitious and ghost companies, which are more or less getting these licences without the requisite capacity therefore blocking companies, and organisations that merit the licences from acquiring them. In fact, it was alleged that the commission substituted names of those that applied with names of entities that neither applied nor met the requirements.

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A Non-Governmental Organisation, Coalition Against Corruption and Bad Governance (CACOBAG), has called on President Buhari to probe these allegations. They stated that they were “compelled to draw the attention of President Buhari and indeed the Nigerian public to a disturbing discovery of how the DG of NBC surreptitiously allocated six slots of radio licenses to his private company, Word Sound and Vision (WSV) Multimedia Ltd in the recent allocation of Radio and Television broadcast licenses to private operators in the country.”

On the back of the subsisting allegations, it should be recalled that the NBC DG, is being prosecuted along with others by the Independent Corrupt Practices Commission, ICPC over alleged N2.5billion Digital Switch Over fraud, currently.
If the Buhari administration is truly committed to fighting corruption, the corruption and racketeering at NBC must not be swept under the carpet except the presidency is complicit. It is high time the administration shows that it indeed has a zero tolerance for corruption by investigating such high profile corruption allegations. A corrupt free NBC is necessary for achieving the vision of the commission in regulating the media in Nigeria. Security agencies must be authorized by the president to investigate these allegations, as they are a setback on the anti-corruption agenda of President Buhari.

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See Affidavit attached below:

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