NMC should’ve been involved in closure of 4 Bawku radio stations – MFWA

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The Media Foundation for West Africa (MFWA) has expressed reservations about a decision by the National Communications Authority (NCA) to shut down some four radio stations in Bawku over security concerns.

The NCA, in a statement on Saturday, February 24, 2024, announced the shutdown of Bawku FM, Source FM, Zahra FM, and Gumah FM following the recommendation of the Upper East Regional Security Council and the Ministry of National Security.

Speaking to Citi News, the Programmes Officer at the MFWA, Kwaku Krobea Asante, said the NCA should have involved the National Media Commission, the agency responsible for regulating media content before closing down the stations.

“What we would have wished to have seen is that this whole exercise should have involved the National Media Commission because, essentially, it is the National Media Commission that the constitution gives the powers to oversee the professional and ethical standards of the media.”

“I understand that the NCA has its provisions and laws to take actions like that, but the precedent that this sets for our press freedom and other similar engagements like this can be a little worrying.”

Meanwhile, the West Africa Center for Counter-Extremism (WACCE) says the National Communications Authority’s decision has come too late.

The Executive Director of WACCE, Mutaru Mumuni Muqthar said the closures came too late, considering the harm that the stations’ presenters and panelists have caused in the area.

“This is even too late in terms of the impact with the kind of panelists that have been featured on some of these radio stations in the Bawku area. I think that it is late, but it should come because it can prevent the bad situation from becoming worse, and so I think that this is something we should have had a couple of years ago when the conflict escalated. For this to happen now, we must embrace that and also feature other measures that can help calm the situation.”

 

citinewsroom.com

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