The Director General and Management of the National Broadcasting Commission are in Kano State for a one- day Stakeholders meeting with Hon. Commissioners of Information and Chief Executives of Broadcast stations.
The meeting which is taking place at Bristol Palace Hotel, is convened to address and engage stakeholders on the need to stay up-to-date with payments and renewal of their license fees.
The Secretary to Commission, Dr. Igomu Onoja, in his opening remarks emphasized the need for broadcasters to update their payment. This, he noted, is to enable the Commission carry out it’s responsibilities without hindrance.
Welcoming the Hon. Commissioners of information and all Chief Executive Officers of broadcast stations in the North East, North West and North Central geo- political zones of Nigeria to the meeting, The NBC DG, Mallam Balarabe Shehu Ilelah noted that the Commission has repeatedly engaged stakeholders on the need to stay up-to -date with payments and renewals of license fees.
The meeting according to the Director General, was convened by the Commission to again implore licensees indebted to the Commission to liquidate their indebtedness to the NBC. Adding, that in the last few months the National Broadcasting Commission has displayed human face in relating with Broadcasting stations indebted to it.
Mall. Ilelah noted that the Commission in the past, has been extremely magnanimous to grant discount in other to enable stations meet up critical statutory requirement and most especially, allow the newly licensed stations find their footing in the industry.
The NBC Chief further added, that considering the non- responsiveness of some licensees, it became imperative for the Commission to invite the licensees for a meeting in order to remind them of their statutory obligation to the broadcast regulator.
The DG, NBC, in the course of the meeting, informed the stakeholders that all licensees indebted to the Commission, have till September 9, 2023, to liquidate such debt. Adding, that after the deadline, the licenses of debtors will be revoked and their frequencies, duly reassigned to other users.
Provisional licenses according to Mall. Ilelah not paid for, after two years of issuance will be considered as lapsed, and may in accordance with 5.10(b) of the third schedule of the NBC Act.
He added that organizations who have been recently granted provisional approvals, should fulfil it’s financial obligations to the NBC or have such approvals withdrawn while noting that 60days from date of provisional approval is given for such payments.
Mall. Ilelah further reiterated that the situation of warehousing licenses in multiple locations without putting it to use, is henceforth discouraged, as payments are therefore required for such licenses.
Citing section 2(10)a of the Nigeria Broadcasting Code, the DG, pointed out that broadcasters shall remit to the Commission 2.5% of it’s annual income. This, he said, is in pursuant to the agreement reached by the stakeholders during the review of the NBC Code.
In conclusion, Mall Ilelah noted that none payment of license fees by the broadcast station, means that the station by law is not permitted to be on air and any broadcast station who fails to respond to the Commission’s request of staying up- to -date with payment and renewal of license fees, will be treated as an illegal station and an economic saboteur.
This meeting will hold in two locations of the country namely; Kano and Lagos states respectively.