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THE IMPLICATION OF NATIONAL BROADCASTING COMMISSION RULES AND REGULATION ON AFRICA INDEPENDENT TELEVISION

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THE IMPLICATION OF NATIONAL BROADCASTING COMMISSION RULES AND REGULATION ON AFRICA INDEPENDENT TELEVISION

 

ABSTRACT

 

Different countries adopt different measures to check broadcasters. This work, with the objective of ascertaining the regulation impact on the Nigerian broadcasting system, x-rayed the approaches adopted by National Broadcasting Commission. To do this, the authoritarian and libertarian theories became the frameworks. At the end, it was discovered that the major regulatory approaches were licensing, sanctioning, arbitrating and monitoring. It was however found that the NBC exhibited bias against the private stations in its bid to protect the government owned ones. It was therefore recommended that the Nigerian Broadcasting Code be reviewed to make the regulatory body independent; and to encourage pluralism and healthy competition in the industry.

 

CHAPTER ONE

 

1.1 INTRODUCTION

 

According to Harvey (1999 P.1), the study of broadcasting regulation “has started to creep into the edges of the media studies curriculum.” This wind of change should be welcomed, because it will aid the apprehension of the major forces that shape the communication environment. It has been noted that “literature on media regulation were predominantly produced by legal scholars following Eric Barendt’s comparative study on law” (Harvey 1999, p.1).

 

However, globalization in the face of specialization necessitated probes in sections of the society by scholars in the different areas. That is why media scholars cannot do without looking at issues as they concern media practices. An appraisal of the statutes of regulation of the Nigerian broadcast industry is pertinent at this period when the whole world is talking about digitization of broadcasting. By 2015, according to the deadline by International

 

Telecommunication Union, ITU, every broadcast station in the world would have switched over from analogue to digital broadcasting. Against this backdrop, the National Broadcasting Commission, NBC, (the regulatory body for broadcasting in Nigeria) set June 2012 as the switchover date for Nigeria (Aihe 2008, p.1). Several issues have arisen from scholars and stakeholders since the announcement. But there are several advantages in the digitization policy; including the expected shoot up in the number of broadcast stations and the competitions that will follow.

 

This circumstance and other bugging issues bring to the fore, the paramount need to delve into the regulation realm of the Nigerian broadcast industry. The quest will, no doubt engender comprehensibility on the populace as well as guide the regulators and stakeholders for effective broadcasting in a digital age.

 

HISTORICAL BACKGROUND OF AFRICAN INDEPENDENT TELEVISION

 

DAAR communication did not start broadcasting operation not until 1994, six years after its corporation. This was due to legislative initiative in Nigeria’s broadcasting sector; it was not until August 24, 1992 about fifty years after the advent of broadcasting in Nigeria that the government promulgated decree NO 38 which deregulated the ownership of the electronic media in the country.

 

Following this piece of legislation, which ushered in a new era of private? Ownership of radio, Television station a DAAR Communication applied for radio, television and direct broadcasting by satellite license, the license was subsequently granted. It began full commercial broadcast operation in September 1, 1994 on. Its high profile radio channel with the call sign, RAY POWER 100.5, the first private independent radio station in the federal republic of Nigeria.

 

AIT’s audience is global; the appeal is to a broad cross section of popular taste to those seeking authentic and authoritative information about African, Caribbean, and afro American experience. AIT provides the natural programming choice.

 

The station beams quality programme round the clock down linked and redistributed in Africa, the whole of America, Mexico, and the Caribbean, the in-depth coverage aims to keep global viewers fully in tune with the soul of an African broadcaster offering premium quality service.

 

DAAR communication limited broadcasting stations are on air 24 hours daily likewise its internet company also provides 24 hours services, December 6, 1996 heralded the commencement of a star in global satellite broadcasting which is AIT channel 21, it provides a fresh start to TV broadcasting with a unique programming theme that shares the African experience with the wider global community.

 

It is committed to the task of bridging the gap in the global communication which places Africans at the ruthless mercy of western perspective, opinion and masses. AIT’s main task is to project Africa from a holistic African perspective, untrained, undiluted, and absolutely original; AIT offers the world a new insight into the African experience.

 

The management structure allows for autonomy in running of the distinct service that makes up the broadcast company RAYPOWER 100.5, RAYPOWER 106.5 FM, AIT and DAAR INTERNET with separate general manager for each of the stations, the autonomy of the arms is only limited to the extent that it is answerable to a board of management that is headed by the chief operating officer.

 

1.2 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY

 

Radio and television are essential organs for national deve1oment and should therefore be used for the promotion of Nigeria’s cultural, economic and political development.

 

As the media utilizes the airwaves, which belong to public, the broadcasting media should be used to improve, and promote unity and security of the people and the nation.

 

There is a need for a body that will regulate their operations, while the body is expected to have controlling powers over the broadcasting media; it shall at least provide operational guidelines that will prevent the abuse of the media.

 

On the 24th August 1992, the then military president Ibrahim Badamosi Babangida signed into law, decree No 38 which allows private participation in broadcasting. This was done through the establishment of the national broadcasting Commission Decree No 38 authorized the national broadcasting commission (NBC) to keep watch Over license and regulate broadcasting in Nigeria, this is why every mission of sound and vision either by cable, television, radio, satellite or any medium of broadcasting from anywhere in the country is subjected to its authority.

 

However, the broadcast media, like the other media of mass communication must be geared towards national unity and peaceful communication existence.

 

Without a national policy that provides clear guidelines for other operation, the broadcast ‘media may not play their proper role in the growth and development of the nation.

 

This is why there is need for a body like NBC which is the sole chartered organization with power to regulate broadcasting in all its activities.NBC was among other things empowered and designed to carry out these functions: Setting up standard on acceptable content and equality of programmes and non- programmes broadcast in Nigeria; Seizing transmission equipment or withdrawing licenses where necessary should any broadcast media breach the NBC code; Upholding the principle of equity and fairness on broadcasting as well as immediate setting up of broadcasting transmitters.

 

Section 311 of the federal communication act authorized the NBC to withhold broadcasting stations license from persons who have been convicted of violating the anti laws, does implies that in the absence of such conviction, conduct of the applicant emanating to such violation may not be considered by the commission in determining whether the granting of his application would be contrary to the “public interest”.

 

As earlier stated the broadcasting media, like the other media of mass communication must be geared towards national unity and the peaceful communication existence. Without a national policy that provides clear guidelines for other operation the broadcast media may not play their proper role in the growth and development of the nation.

 

This is why there is a need for a body like the national broadcasting commission (NBC), which was established through decree No 38 of 1992 and has become an act of the national assembly, which is the sole chartered organisation with the power to regulate broadcasting in all its activities.

 

In conclusion, it is hoped that through this research work some of mass communication theories will be examined. Also it will look into the implication and impact of national broadcasting commission (NBC) rules and regulation of Africa Independent Television (AIT).

 

1.3 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM

 

Implication of the NBC rules and regulation on broadcasting media can be said to be how the national broadcasting commission activities and services has been influencing the operation of the broadcast media.

 

1.4 RESEARCH QUESTIONS

 

1 Is AIT dispose to the rules and regulation of NBC?

 

2 Does AIT’s adherence to NBC rules and regulation affect the AIT’s programme?

 

3 Do NBC rules and regulation in anyway aid AIT’s professionalism?

 

4 Do NBC rules and regulation influence the content programme contents of AIT’S?

 

5 Of what implication is NBC regulation on AIT’s programming?

 

6 To what extent does AIT’s closure in 2005 by NBC affect its news reportage?

 

7 Do NBC rules and regulation affect AIT’s programme selection and Scheduling?

 

1.5 OBJECTIVE OF THE STUDY

 

The aim or objective of this study is to find out the implication of the national broadcasting commission (NBC) rules and regulation on Africa Independent Television.

 

This research work will find out if factors such as professionalism, commercial lobbies, Non Governmental organisation and so on affect or influence the broadcasting station in complying with the NBC rules and regulation.

 

1.6 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY

 

It is hoped that the findings of this research work will not only add to the vast knowledge about the implication of the national broadcasting commission (NBC) rules and regulation on broadcasting media.

 

It will serve as a true reflection of the activities of the national broadcasting commission; it will also help broadcast media in building their operations on NBC directives. Again it will also serve as a guide to prospective researchers who may want to further explore or research on this area of study.

 

1.6 SCOPE OF THE STUDY

 

This research work will look into the subject implication of national broadcasting commission rules and regulation on Broadcast Media.

 

1.7 LIMITATION OF THE STUDY

 

The findings of this research work are only limited to Africa Independent Television, ; limited time; lack of funds and non availability of materials for effective researching inability or no access to statistics and information from the National Broadcasting Commission.

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