By Is’haq Babatunde
The Director-General of the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC), Is’haq Modibbo Kawu says the commission is currently processing 200 broadcasting licenses to be issued out very soon.
These new 200 broadcasting stations (radio and television), Kawu said , would join the existing 740 broadcasting stations in Nigeria.
The NBC boss said this high number of broadcating stations in Nigeria makes the broadcasting industry in the country to be one of the leading employers of labour, as the industry will soon have about 940 broadcasting stations after the next phase of the new approval.
Kawu disclosed on Sunday (December 8, 2019) while speaking at the 5th year anniversary of the Fresh Insight Magazine, held at Banquet Hall, opposite Government House, Ilorin, the kwara state capital.
According to him, commission gave licenses to 243 stations in September last year saying that by the time the new licenses are released, more job opportunities would be provided for the teaming unemployed youth in the country.
He disclosed further that the commission was working towards the possibility of having 200 channels on the platform of government digital switch over (Free TV) to allow people the opportunity to tune to different programmes of their choice.
“Last year September we gave 243 licenses, as I’m talking to you we are expecting another set of almost 200 licenses, in terms of the quantity of stations and opportunity for people to be employed in broadcasting industry the sector has gone far”.
“At the moment, we have about 740 radio and television stations and we think that before long, this will increase because at the moment we are processing new licenses. For television, we are looking at possibility on the platform of our digital switch over to have up to 200 chanels in Nigeria to enable us have different channels such as for the children, women, documentaries and several others so that when you tune television, you have a lot of channels that will satisfy different tastes” Kawu added.
He explained that the deregulation in the broadcasting industry has opened up a lot of opportunitiesand advantages for the people of the country.
He called on operators of the stations to be cautious about their operations and be mindful of the fact that the license given to them is for the community and should not be used against the people of the society.
He warned radio and TV stations operators in the country to eperate within confine of the NBC regulations saying that ” the license you hold as a radio station or TV station belong to Nigeria people and it must not be used against the good owners, which are Nigerians.
Kawu however called on new cabinet in kwara state to work hard and be ready to justify the confidence reposed on them by the people of the state.
“The cabinet must understand that they need to work hard, the expectation of people is high and the resources do not match the expectation so they need to work very hard to meet up with the expectation” he said.
Earlier in his address, the Publisher and Editor-In-Chief of Fresh Insight, Comrade Abdulrasheed Akogun said the event was to mark the 5th year of doggedness of the the newspaper, chronicling the kwara state yesterday, today and tomorrow.
The event was attended by present and immediate past political office holders in the state, invited guests, religious leaders among others.