Channels Television was fined N5 million by the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) for breaching the law when it interviewed Labour Party vice presidential candidate Datti Baba-Ahmed.
A letter from Balarabe Ilelah, the director-general of the commission, bearing the subject line “Broadcast of an Inciting Interview, A Sanction,” was used to inform the television station’s CEO of the sanction.
The NCC chairman claimed that the interview broke some rules of the broadcasting code since it was explosive and had the potential to cause a riot. He claims that this includes the clause that states that no broadcast may provoke, encourage, or contain language that is derogatory to any person or organization, living or dead, or that is generally disrespectful.
It read in part
‘’The NBC monitored the broadcast of a live interview of the running mate of the Labour Party Vice presidential candidate, Dr Datti Baba-Ahmed, by the anchor of Politics Today, Seun Okibaloye, on Wednesday, March 22. Dr Baba-Ahmed said it will be unconstitutional to swear in an elected president on May 29, 2023, because of election irregularities,” Ilelah said in the letter.
Ilelah continued by saying that in accordance with the broadcasting rules, broadcasters were required to make sure that no program contained anything that might be considered a subversion of established authority.
“Consequently, on the following infractions, Channels Television is hereby sanctioned and shall pay a penalty of N5,000,000 (five million naira) only in the first instance” he said
He further stated that the television channel would face harsher penalties for any future violations.
“You are advised to pay within two weeks from the day of receipt of this letter or the penalty will be graduated,” the NBC Director-General said
After Bola Tinubu’s petition to the commission regarding the interview, the commission has now imposed this sanction.