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Suspension of Vision FM & WATA TV: HEDA writes NBC, demands strict compliance: “the Commission was implored to fully comply with the law and reverse any arbitral sanctions and fines slashed against the Media houses”

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Following the suspension  of “IDON MIKIYA” Program Airing on Vision FM and Farin WATA Television Channel, the Human & Environmental Development Agenda (HEDA Resource Centre) has written to the Director General of National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) to comply strictly with the provision of the National Broadcasting Commission Act and the Nigeria Broadcasting Code in its purported sanction of Vision FM and Farin WATA television channel if truly they are in breach of the Act.

In a statement delivered by the chairman of HEDA, Olanrewaju Suraju, the Commission was implored to fully comply with the law and reverse any arbitral sanctions and fines slashed against the Media houses.

“We write on the above subject matter as a leading Anti-Corruption Organization in Nigeria and non-partisan Human Rights and development league with the mandate to protect and promote universally recognized human rights, public accountability, transparency and environmental justice in Nigeria and Africa, in accordance with International best standards.

“We got wind of the arbitral suspension of “IDON NIKIYA” program airing on Vision FM and Farin WATA television channel and imposition of a Five Million Naira (N5,000,000:00) fine through the media and as a leading Anti-Corruption Organization, we deem it fit to lend our voice to the condemnation of this arbitrary action of your Commission,”

HEDA refer to Section 22 of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended) which provides for the obligation of the mass media by stating that the press, radio, television and other agencies of the mass media at all times be free to uphold… the responsibility and accountability of the Government to the people. HEDA also cited Section 39 of the Constitution which provides for the right to freedom of expression of the press and the African Charter on People and Humans’ Right which guarantees and protects the right of the press and mass media.

“Section 2(g) and (t) of the National Broadcasting Commission Act provides respectively that the Commission in exercising its power, shall uphold the principles of equity and fairness in broadcasting and guarantee and ensure the liberty and protection of the broadcast industry with due respect to the law. It is on the above authorities, especially on the principles of equity and fairness, that we charge the Commission to strictly comply with the law and reverse any arbitral sanctions and fines,” HEDA charged.

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