Bowing to pressure from stakeholders including professional bodies, the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) said on Friday that it has suspended the shutting down of the 52 TV and radio stations over their indebtedness.
In a statement in Abuja, the regulatory agency said it is suspending the shut-down order “temporarily.”
The action followed the responses being received from the affected stations, the NBC Director-General, Mr Balarabe Shehu Ilelah, said.
Persecondnews had reported that the Nigerian Guild of Editors and SERAP had sued Buhari over broadcast stations’ shutdown order over N2.6 billion debt while RATTAWU also faulted the revocation of their licences.
On August 19, NBC had directed 52 broadcast outfits, including AIT, Silverbird TV, other private and state-owned radio and TV stations to shut down their operations.
Ilelah said the “positive responses” received from the debtor licencees, including big players in the broadcast industry was responsible for the temporary suspension.
“Sequel to a follow-up meeting held with Executives of the Broadcasting Organisations of Nigeria, and other critical Stakeholders in the industry, the Commission has decided to temporarily suspend the shutdown of the indebted Broadcast stations all over the Country.
“We express our profound appreciation to the Broadcasting Organisation of Nigeria, the affected licensees and Broadcast Stakeholders for their responses and interventions.
“We, specifically, thank DAAR Communications Ltd and Silverbird TV/Rhythm FM for their responses.
“The Commission is not unaware of the difficulties this shutdown must have caused the operators and other stakeholders but must state that the Commission will always operate within the National Broadcasting Commission Act, Cap. N11, Laws of the Federation, 2004,” the statement said.
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