From Olawale Ajimotokan in Abuja
The National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) has decried the demolition of a property belonging to a musician, Yinka Ayefele, by the Oyo State government.
The Music House, where Fresh FM in Ibadan was transmitting from, was demolished on Sunday morning.
The Director-General of NBC, Ishaq Modibbo-Kawu, Wednesday bemoaned the act by Oyo State government as a worrisome development capable of having negative effects on the country. The demolished asset is valued at N800 million.
Speaking in Ilorin, Modibbo-Kawu said the action was an embarrassment to the nation and did not cast Oyo State in a positive frame.
“Such development does not speak well of the government and has a negative effect on the nation, especially at a point when more broadcasting outfits are influencing the social space in the country.
“In this case particularly, there are so many issues that can be weaved up negatively by people.
“We hope that as we move forward, we will be able to find a solution to the situation,” Modibbo-Kawu said.
The NBC DG said he was worried by the action because broadcast corporations, beyond the traditional role of entertaining, informing and educating the society, also create jobs particularly for unemployed youths.
He accused Oyo State government of carrying out the demolition in spite of NBC’s move to stop the action when it got wind of it by making contact with some people in the state.
He, however, promised to set up a meeting with the state government on how to resolve the issue.
Oyo State government claimed it ordered the controversial action because the said property was in contravention of the physical planning regulations of the state bureau of physical planning and development control.
Speaking further, Kawu recalled a related incident last year, leading to the demolition of a property housing Breeze FM 99.9 FM by Nasarawa State government, in spite of the intervention of the commission.
“What we did was to meet our licensee to find out what the issues were because he was prepared to go to court.
“We also met with the state Commissioner for Information and the governor.
“The issue also was that the building violated the usage of urban space.
“We were able to reach an agreement that the government should give the broadcaster a new plot of land and assist him to go back to building a new station.
“However, just last week, I got a letter that the side of the government in the agreement had not been fulfilled,” Kawu said.