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Nigerian radio station has licence removed for "inciting violence"

The rooftops of Kano, Nigeria, as seen from Dalla Hill.
The rooftops of Kano, Nigeria, as seen from Dalla Hill.


(MRA/IFEX) - On 22 February 2013, Nigeria's National Broadcasting Commission (NBC), the regulatory body for broadcasting, indefinitely suspended the Kano operating licence of Globe Broadcasting and Communications Limited, owners of Wazobia FM in Kano, northern Nigeria.

Wazobia FM also broadcasts in Abuja, Lagos and Port Harcourt with different licenses covering its operations in these cities.

The suspension is contained in a statement issued in Abuja on by the commission's Head of Public Affairs, Mallam Awwalu Salihu. The statement explained that the suspension was in continuation of the steps taken by the commission following the broadcast of an episode of a programme called "Sandar Girma." The programme was blamed for inciting violence, which led to the killing of nine polio vaccinators by unknown gunmen.

The statement said the programme breached Section 3.9.1 of the Nigerian Broadcasting Code, which prohibits the use of language encouraging crime or disorder.

It said: "Section 3.9.1, for instance, stipulates that: language or scene likely to encourage or incite crime, or lead to disorder, shall not be broadcast."

The statement added that the station had been used in a manner that was detrimental to national interest, and ordered the station to go off air, with "immediate" effect until further notice.

Malam Awwalu Salihu said in the statement: "The Commission has, therefore, decided to suspend the licence of the station in accordance with sections 10(d) and 14 of the Third Schedule of the National Broadcasting Commission Act, CAP N11, Laws of the Federation, 2004, until further notice."

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