NBC tells TV, Radio stations not to report details of terror attacks

Broadcasters have been warned against glamourising the operations of insurgents.

President Buhari (L) and his Information/Culture Minister Lai Mohammed (Presidency)

The National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) has ordered television and radio stations across the country not to divulge “details” of the activities of bandits, terrorists and kidnappers in their reports.

In a letter dated July 7, 2021, the NBC asked broadcast stations not to “glamourise the nefarious activities of insurgents” during their daily newspaper reviews.

The letter titled, ‘Newspaper Reviews And Current Affairs Programmes: A Need For Caution’, was signed by the Director, Broadcast Monitoring, Francisca Aiyetan, on behalf of the new Director-General of the NBC, Balarabe Ilelah.

The directive reads that: “Headlines of most Newspapers on a daily basis are replete with security topics.

"While bringing information on security to the doorsteps of Nigerians is a necessity, there is a need for caution as too many details may have an adverse implication on the efforts of our security officials who are duty-bound to deal with the insurgency.

“The Commission, therefore, enjoins broadcasters to collaborate with the government in dealing with the security challenges by;

“Not glamourising the nefarious activities of insurgents, terrorists, kidnappers, bandits etc.

“Advising guests and/or analysts on programmes not to polarise the citizenry with divisive rhetoric, in driving home their point."

The regulator also reminded broadcast stations to be guided by provisions of Sections 5.4.1(f) and 5.4.3 of the NBC Code which states that:

“The broadcaster shall not transmit divisive materials that may threaten or compromise the divisibility and indissolubility of Nigeria as a sovereign state.

“In reporting conflict situations, the broadcaster shall perform the role of a peace agent by adhering to the principle of responsibility, accuracy and neutrality.”

The NBC recently fined some television stations for their coverage of the #EndSARS protests again police brutality.

The President Muhammadu Buhari administration has embarked on a frenzied mission to regulate the social and mainstream media space in Africa's most populous nation.

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