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Monday, October 3, 2022

Nigerian Government Vows To Penalise BBC, TV Trust For Reporting Terrorists’ Activities 

The BBC released a video on Monday featuring some bandits terrorising the northern part of the country. The bigwigs made revelatory, yet cloned statements that indict people in the government

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Mohammed Yakubu
Mohammed Yakubu
Mohammed Yakubu is an investigative journalist reporting on public health, human rights, climate change, education, gender issues, and much more.

AFRICA.Nigeria: Nigeria’s government says it will sanction the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) and Daily Trusts for “propagating terrorism” in the country.

Lai Mohammed, the country’s Minister of Information and Culture, disclosed this during a press briefing in Abuja, Nigeria’s capital city.

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The BBC in a video released on Monday featured some bandits terrorising the northern part of the country. The bigwigs made revelatory, yet cloned statements that indict people in the government.

“When otherwise reputable platforms like the BBC give their platform to terrorists, showing their faces as if they’re Nollywood stars. I want to assure them that they won’t get away with it. The appropriate sanctions will be meted,” said Lai Mohammed.

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The documentary was widely watched by Nigerians. A few months back, Trust TV, a digital extension of Daily Trust newspaper did a similar documentary where notorious bandits leaders like Turji Bello and others were filmed.

These documentaries vexed the government and Transcontinental Times understands they (documentaries) triggered the recent sanction threats.

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“When otherwise reputable platforms like the BBC give their platform to terrorists, showing their faces as if they’re Nollywood stars,” said Mohammed. “I want to assure them that they won’t get away with it. The appropriate sanctions will be meted,” Mohammed added.

He continued, “Let me assure you, they will not get away with this naked glorification of terrorism and banditry in Nigeria.

“All I can say is that there is a regulatory body, the Nigerian Broadcasting Commission (NBC), and they are also aware of these incidents and are looking at which part of the broadcasting codes have been violated by both the BBC and the Daily Trust.

“But I can assure you that there will be consequences. For those who will argue that BBC is a foreign broadcaster and as such, it is not licensed by NBC, let me assure you, they will not get away with this naked glorification of terrorism and banditry in Nigeria.

“I have said it many times here that the media is the oxygen that the terrorists and bandits need to breathe. When other reputable platforms like BBC now give their platform to terrorists, showing their faces as if they are Nollywood stars, what does that mean? I want to assure them they won’t get away with it. There are sanctions to be meted on both the BBC and the Daily Trust.”

Lai Mohammed’s Penchant For discrediting Media Reports 

This was not Lai Mohammed’s first time confronting the media, even when the situation was obvious.

Following the 2020 revolutionary #EndSARS protest that rocked Abuja, Lagos and other major cities, the minister became famous for discrediting media independent findings, saying no life was lost, especially at Lekki Tollgate.

For Instance, the Cable News Network (CNN) tweeted on October 23, 2020, that “At least 38 protesters were killed” by soldiers at Lekki Toll gate, adding that President Muhammadu Buhari failed to acknowledge it in a broadcast he made in respect to the protest.”

“At least 56 people have died across Nigeria since the #EndSARS protests began on October 8, with 38 killed across the country on Tuesday alone, according to human rights group Amnesty International,” CNN reports.

In response, Lai discredited CNN’s report saying it was fake. His condemnation waxed stronger when CNN clarified its tweet 35 days later.

“This tweet from October 23 did not attribute the death toll from protests in Nigeria to Amnesty International. The tweet also did not make it clear that the death toll was for protests across the country,” the news network writes.

Furthermore, Mohammed asked that CNN be sanctioned. Months after, when a report by the #EndSARS panel was released, Mohammed also slammed media houses for widely reporting its findings.

In a press briefing, he insisted no one was killed at Lekki Toll gate and further challenged the family of the deceased protesters [if any] to come and testify publicly.

This was despite alleged threats made to some people who went to the restitution panel to testify against the government.

However, in March this year, when there were coordinated attacks in Kaduna and other parts of the country, the minister insisted the country was safe. Sadly, the insecurity keeps getting worse to the extent that terrorists, recently vowed to kidnap the President and other top government officials.

ALSO READ: Museveni Orders Immediate Release of Ugandan Journalist Who Went Missing For Two Months

Author

  • Mohammed Yakubu

    Mohammed Yakubu is an investigative journalist reporting on public health, human rights, climate change, education, gender issues, and much more.

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