In an interview with The Cable, the director of broadcast monitoring, NBC, Idachaba Armstrong, has said it is the responsibility of the TV stations to ensure offensive songs don’t air.
He said the ban notice on ‘Wo’ and ‘Wavy Level’ by Olamide, ‘Fall’ by Davido and ‘Living Things’ by 9ice did not come from the commission.
“First of all, NBC is a commission, not a corporation. Nobody at NBC issued a statement to the effect. We can’t be issuing a statement on every album released in this country. The broadcaster has the responsibility to do the needful. NBC does not ban songs, we don’t have any business with the artists. It is left for NBC to tell stations to ensure the songs and videos are fit for broadcast before putting them on air.
It is the responsibility of broadcasters to ensure they don’t come on air. They are supposed to do what is called gate-keeping and they should have editorial control over their content but broadcasters now carelessly air songs without exercising that editorial discretion. They abdicate that responsibility and then expect us to start chasing them. ‘The songs are actually offensive.”
Speaking further, Idachaba said “I have reliably gathered that some of those songs are actually offensive, regarding the lyrics. Some of these songs are for clubs. These stations that should practice self-regulation are lazy and unprofessional in their conduct.”
The NBC official said broadcast stations that air offensive songs would be fined by the commission.
“We will impose the necessary sanctions on the stations. If the stations contravene any of the broadcast code, they will be fined. Once NBC picks it up, we call the stations to order and impose the necessary fine. First, we caution you, then impose a fine afterward, which can be between 50-100k. But if they are recalcitrant, it can rise to 500k.”
The Federal Ministry of Health Nigeria has also issued a statement saying it’s not in their jurisdiction to ban songs from airing.
Olamide has also stated that he never intended to promote tobacco use and violating Tobacco Control Act 2015.