NBC fines Nigeria Info N5 million over comments on insecurity
The National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) has fined Nigeria Info N5 million over a comment made by a former Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Dr Obadiah Mailaifa on one of its programme.
“In line with the amendment of the 6th edition of the Nigeria Broadcasting Code, Nigeria Info 99.3FM Lagos, has been fined the sum of N5,000,000.00 (Five Million Naira), only,” NBC management said in a statement.
“The station provided its platform for the guest, Dr. Mailafia Obadiah, to promote unverifiable and inciting views that could encourage or incite to crime and lead to public disorder.”
Mailaifa was interviewed on Monday during Nigeria Info’s programme Morning CrossFire where he spoke about the killings in Southern Kaduna, a region beset by recurring fatal attacks.
He claimed to be part of intelligence networks that have met with some of the bandits and some of their high commanders who have repented.
Mailaifa also claimed that one of the governors in northern Nigeria is the commander of Boko Haram – the terrorist group responsible for the killing and displacement of thousands of people in the Nigerian region.
“They told us that one of the northern governors is the commander of Boko Haram in Nigeria,” Mailaifa said in the interview.
“Boko Haram and the bandits are one and the same. They have a sophisticated network. During this lockdown their planes were moving up and down as if there was no lockdown.”
The former CBN chief said the terror groups were “moving ammunition, moving money, and distributing them across different parts of the country” during the nationwide lockdown imposed by coronavirus pandemic.
He was later invited by the Department of State Services (DSS) for an interrogation that lasted about six hours on Wednesday at Jos, Plateau State capital.
While the details of the interrogation were not made public, NBC said the claims were devoid of facts and fined Lagos-based radio station for violating some sections of the Nigeria Broadcasting Code.
“The National Broadcasting Commission has noted with grave concern, the unprofessional conduct of Nigeria Info 99.3FM, Lagos, in the handling of the Programme, “Morning Cross Fire”, aired on August 10, 2020, between 8.30am and 9.00am,” NBC said.
NBC said the fine on Nigeria Info will “serve as a deterrent to all other broadcast stations in Nigeria who are quick to provide a platform for subversive rhetoric and the expositions of spurious and unverifiable claims, to desist from such.
“The Commission wishes to put it on record that it will not hesitate to suspend the Broadcast Licence of broadcast stations that continue to breach the Code.”
The Nigerian broadcast industry regulatory agency warned other stations “from airing unwholesome content, or be ready to face appropriate sanctions.”
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