General News of Wednesday, 6 December 2017
Electronic Communications Tribunal set up in 2016 to adjudicate media-related issues has ordered the National Communication Authority (NCA) to put on hold any sanctions against 131 FM stations that it cited for various breaches about two months ago.
The tribunal, headed by ex-Supreme Court Judge Justice, Dartey-Baah, ruled on Monday, December 4, 2017 in a case brought before it by the Ghana Independent Broadcasters Association (GIBA) against the NCA in connection with the sanctions against the FM stations, that none of the sanctions should be implemented until the case is fully determined.
GIBA dragged the NCA before the tribunal on 3 November, 2017 after its attempts to have the regulatory body be lenient with the errant FM stations failed.
The NCA, however, did not enter an appearance thus compelling the tribunal to order a suspension of all sanctions until the case is finally dealt with.
It will be recalled that on 29 September, 2017 the NCA sanctioned a total of 131 FM Authorisation Holders found to have committed various infractions pertaining to their authorisations to operate as contained in Section 13 of the Electronics Communications Act (2009), Act 775.
A further 13 FM Authorisation Holders were issued with reprieves as pertained to their authorisations.
This followed the completion of a nation-wide FM Spectrum Audit conducted this year to determine compliance of Authorisation Holders with their Authorisation conditions and to determine which FM stations were in operations or otherwise.