Members of the Peoples Democratic Party caucus in the House of Representatives have sued the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed; and the National Broadcasting Commission over the 6th National Broadcast Code recently released by the National Broadcasting Commission.
Chairman of the PDP caucus,Kingsley Chinda, said the lawmakers will also be suing president Muhammadu Buhari, Minister of Labour, Employment and Productivity, Chris Ngige; Minister of State, Festus Keyamo, SAN; and the National Directorate of Employment over the recruitment of 774,000 for the Federal Government’s Public Works Scheme.
Nobel Laureate, Wole Soyinka, had in a statement on July 7, condemned the new broadcasting code, saying it amounted to a declaration of war on arts producers by the Federal Government.
The PDP also on August 7, 2020, in a statement by its National Publicity Secretary, Kola Ologbondiyan, faulted the reviewed code especially where violators are liable to a fine of N5m as against the previous fine of N500,000.
Mohammed had, however, insisted that the sixth edition of the code was part of ongoing reforms in the sector, which he said was in the best interest of the country.
At the NBC’s 28th anniversary and sixth annual lecture in Abuja, the minister said government’s expectation was that the ongoing reforms, including the amendment of the code, would revolutionise the nation’s broadcasting industry.
Mohammed noted that the Buhari-led Federal Executive Council supported the amendments after a review of the 2019 general elections.
But the PDP caucus dragged Malami, Mohammed and the NBC before a Federal High Court in Abuja seeking to void the code.