The reasons for the granting of frequency authorisation for some radio stations in Ghana do not sit well with the Executive Director of the Media Foundation for West Africa (MFWA), Sulemana Braimah.
Mr Braimah sees the National Communication Authority’s (NCA) step as a “discriminatory, politically-motivated decision” that has only been restored.
“One could only conclude that there was a rationale behind why some specifications were selected and shut down, so I don’t see anything to be happy about,” he said.
This comes in the wake of a decision by the NCA Board to approve the licenses of some stations, including Radio Gold and Radio XYZ, for operation.
These stations form part of the 131 others who have been authorized to operate subject to some conditions spelt out by the NCA board.
In May 2019, the NCA shut down these radio stations, which some have described as politically motivated.
But the NCA insisted that the affected parties re-apply for a license if they wished to operate as Frequency Modulation (FM) radio stations, which had expired according to the Authority’s records.
Two years down the line, the Authority says it is ready to grant them broadcasting authorization “subject to the applicants attending a sensitisation workshop on the terms and conditions of FM radio broadcasting authorisations.”
In a statement dated October 12, the NCA explained that the “provisional authorisations shall be issued to the successful applicants at the end of the workshop and frequencies shall be assigned to the applicants only upon the fulfilment of the conditions of the Provisional Authorisation.”
But the MFWA boss does not see the wisdom in the justification.
Sulemana Braima told Accra-based Asaase Radio that “it was a very discriminatory, politically motivated decision that was taken and now the same entity has decided to reverse its own decision. So I don’t think there’s anything I should be elated about.”
“There were over a hundred that were in the same situation based on the NCA’s own data, and yet they were not shut down.”