The National Broadcasting Commission has urged broadcasters covering the general elections not to utilize or permit the use of their platforms and facilities for the transmission of anything that could contribute to the breakdown of peace and order in Nigeria.
According to The PUNCH, the Director-General of NBC, Balarabe Ilelah, issued the warning in a statement titled, “Warning to broadcast stations”, obtained by journalists in Abuja on Monday night.
The commission cautioned that appropriate consequences would be meted out to any errant station that violates the Nigeria Broadcasting Code while also reminding all broadcast stations of their responsibility to advance sustainable democracy in Nigeria.
The statement reads, “The National Broadcasting Commission reminds all broadcasters covering and reporting the 2023 general elections to endeavor to abide by the provisions of the Extant Electoral Law (s), the Nigeria Broadcasting Code, and other relevant regulations guiding the broadcast of elections in Nigeria.
“The commission also said it had observed that some guests on broadcast stations are making volatile allusions capable of causing unrest in the country.
“For the avoidance of doubt, the code admonished broadcasters in the following Sections:
5.3.3(k) not use any vote obtained at a polling station or from an exit poll to project or speculate on the chances of a candidate; 5.3.3(l) relay election results or declaration of the winner only as announced by the authorized electoral officer for the election; The NBC Act CAP N11, Laws of the Federation, 2004, also prescribes, in the third Schedule 12(6) that, “A licensee shall be responsible for the content of the Station’s Broadcast.”
“The commission, while reminding all broadcast stations by this release that they have a duty to promote sustainable democracy in Nigeria, also warns that appropriate sanctions would be meted out to any erring station that operates outside the confines of the Nigeria Broadcasting Code.
“The commission enjoins all broadcasters to desist from using or allowing their platforms and facilities to be used for the broadcast of contents that may lead to the breakdown of law and order.
“Therefore, broadcasters shall perform the role of peace agents by adhering to the principles of responsibility, accuracy and neutrality.”