New dawn in National Broadcasting Commission under Idachaba

Posted by News Express | 19 February 2021 | 404 times

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•NBC Acting DG, Prof Idachaba



Just like yesterday, it has been one eventful year since assumption of office by the Acting Director-General, National. Broadcasting Commission (NBC), Prof Aduku Augustine Armstrong Idachaba.

Idachaba, who rose through the cadre of the NBC, joined the organisation in 1994 and has held several positions of authority in the in the last 27 years.

His appointment as acting Director-General of the NBC was purely on merit as the most senior director in the organisation when the onus of leadership fell on him.

As an insider, his appointment was greeted with a lot of pomp and pageantry as well as high expectations, as the challenge of leadership was simplified from his wisdom and management acumen, that brought on board de-spirited staffers of the organisation back to seamless synergy, to move the broadcast organisation to high pedestal of performance in the spirit of new leadership.

Idachaba kicked the ground running, as he convened stakeholders meeting to chart a new course for the advancement of National Broadcasting Commission in line with the expectations of government and the general public.

With anxiousness and all seriousness it deserved, the professor of mass Communication and Dramatic Arts left no stone unturned; that, immediately, restored and redeemed the image of Nigeria both within and the international communities, deployed strictly the acceptable and standard broadcast code/norms on the broadcast stations that was hitherto a subject of constant breach by many broadcast organisations.

Idachaba hurriedly restored sanity in the broadcast industry as he frowned against unsubstantiated news, fake news, inciting, hate speech, blackmail and other anti-broadcast code insinuations, against the constituted authorities that had portrayed the image of the country negatively/bad light.

He controlled to the barest minimum politicallyrmotivated statements being broadcast by both Radio and television stations not in tandem with the laid down procedures of the NBC as the chief regulator of their activities.

This development brought sanity to broadcast industry, attracted more investments and investors into the country, with their Investments not prone to misinformation.

The new Ag D-G also improved the revenue base of the organisation and for the first time in the history of the NBC, he made the organisation a self-sustaining agency in terms of finances and funding; a feat that was commended by the federal lawmakers, after a careful study and delisted from 2020 yearly appropriations, after a marvellous performance on the way its revenue was handled.

The vote of confidence passed on the current leadership of the Commission by the National Assembly, the legislative arm of government charged with scrutiny of finances of government, was a unique achievement, rare in recent times.

Idachaba who made transparency and accountability as one of his cardinal objectives did not negate his set goals as workers are being motivated for optimum performance with new offices opened both at the state and zonal levels in the country.

The Harvard-trained professor refused to concede professional practices at the altar of sensationalism and against national interest, as he insisted that the broadcast code is the “Holy Book” of broadcast stations in Nigeria, and its provision must be strictly followed as outlined by the chief regulator, the NBC.

Hence the decision of NBC that reprimanded some broadcast organisations that deliberately breached the practice code, aftermath of #EndSARS protests was a welcome decision; a development many Nigerians agreed was a right decision at that particular point in time.

This decision was also applicable to broadcast stations that misinformed the general public, through advertisement of the availability of orthodox and unorthodox drugs for the newly discovered COVID-19 pandemic that had ravaged the entire world to a standstill, with Nigeria not an exception.

This positive development through deployment of the broadcast regulatory code had brought total sanity to the broadcast industry, as many stations in Nigeria due to quarterly assessment re-jigged by the new Commission, had imbued the culture of fair practice in the course of broadcasting in Nigeria.

The climax of the present management achievements is the approval of over N9 billion by the Federal Government for the digital switch over (DSO) of the activities of NBC, from analogue to digital under the present dispensation.

This major achievement that almost eluded the country under the former dispensation in NBC, with an instruction to countries to switch over not later than 2020, granted a concession to Nigeria to key in the next few years by the ITU from the determination of the current management.

The concession was borne out of the willingness and determination of the NBC to key in within the specified time, after offices were already opened in Kano, Enugu, and Jos for the take-off, spread to Lagos, Port-Harcourt and Enugu in the new order.

This is in addition to many requests by individuals, companies and groups that daily sought for broadcast licences to either operate a new radio station and television in Nigeria, going by the lucrative and conducive nature of their operations under the current management.

The university don in the last one year used the NBC to foster social integration, national unity, economic viability and technological breakthrough in Nigeria.

As it will be expected in the coming years of more breakthroughs, through a well thought-out leadership inertia that is prepared to deliver on the mandate of NBC.

•Yusuf writes from Abuja.

Source: News Express

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