Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF) in a letter to Nana Akufo-Addo, President of Ghana has expressed concern over the shutdown of Accra based Radio Gold and Radio XYZ.
PPF Secretary General Owais Aslam Ali in his letter has condemned the shutdown of both radio stations and urged the management of stations and the regulator to discuss and try to resolve the matter and resume the broadcasting.
According to the Media Foundation for West Africa (MFWA), Ghana’s broadcasting and telecommunication frequency regulator, The National Communications Authority (NCA) has shut down the two radio stations on May 9.
The NCA officials along with the law enforcement agencies stormed the premises of both radio stations that are associated with the main opposition party, the National Democratic Congress (NDC) and enforced to shut down the station in the afternoon of May 9.
In a statement issued by NCA it was stated that the closures were resulted in line with Regulations 65 (1) of the Electronic Communications Regulations, 2011, L. I. 1991, which states that “A person shall not use a radio frequency without authorization from the Authority.”
Highlighting the 2018 ruling by the Electronic Communications Tribunal on the status of FM stations with expired authorization, the NCA added, “Companies whose authorizations had expired reverted to the same position as a fresh applicant,” adding that “these applications shall go through the required procedure for new FM Broadcasting Authorization.”
In less than two years this is the second incident that the regulator has taken action against the stations. In September 2017, the NCA carried out a massive crackdown against the broadcasting industry by closing down a total of 34 radio and television stations for various violations by enforcing Section 13 of the Electronics Communications Act (2009), Act 775.
NCA has also imposed fines on a number of stations ranging from GHC50, 000 (US$11,000) to GHC61, 000,000 (US$13.8 million) depending on the violation and the duration the infraction persisted.