NCA organizes sensitization workshop for closed down stations, grants them provisional authorisation

The National Communications Authority has today, Thursday, October 21, 2021, organized a sensitization workshop for some one hundred and thirty-three FM radio stations including new applicants who had their broadcasting authorisations revoked and FM radio stations were closed down after the 2017 FM Audit.

The NCA also granted provisional authorisation to the stations as well as existing stations which applied for renewal of their expired FM Radio broadcasting authorisations.

The acting engineering head, Mr Edmund Yirenkyi Fianko explained that the electronic communications Act, 2008(Act 775)and the Electronic Communications Regulations 2011(L.I. 1991) requires that, holders of frequency Authsation are to abide by specific regulations and conditions, failing which the Authorisation may be suspended or revoked.

He was speaking at a sensitization workshop organized by the NCE today, Thursday, October 21, 2021.

Mr. Fianko noted that frequencies are national assets, held in trust by the Authority and assigned to specific users for a period subject to specific conditions.

He urged holders to abide by the terms and conditions to avoid revoking their Authorisations.

The NCA he noted organised a sensitization workshop for successful applicants for FM Radio Broadcasting Authorisation to understand the terms and conditions.

He said the NCA has simplified or summarised the terms and conditions into ten key points.

He explained that among the terms and conditions, the authorisation is ”provisional” for thew or renewal, and owners have 60 days to pay their renewal or be forced to reapply for a new one.

The final authorisation would be granted after the payment has been received.

After that, one would be granted the frequencies and be handed all the dos and don’ts for operation.

For new stations, owners have two years to put the station together and invite the NCA to inspect the station and give the test transmission authorisation after satisfying itself that everything was okay.

He said if after two years, you do use the test transmission authorisation, you would be fined or have the authorisation revoked.

The authorisation he revealed will last for five years, but owners should not wait till the authorisation has expired before they reapply.

He also stated that it is unlawful for stations not to seek approval before using frequencies and links for their stations where they operate the studios far from their transmitters.

He insisted that per Section 2(4) of the Electronic Communications Act, 2008, Act 775, a person shall not operate a broadcasting system or provide a broadcasting service without a frequency authorisation by the Authority.

Offenders are liable on summary conviction to a fine of not more than three thousand penalty units or to a term of imprisonment of not more than five years or to both, as per Section 73 of Act 775 of 2008.

Background

The Governing Board of the National Communications Authority (NCA), at a Board meeting held on October 11, 2021, approved the grant of a total of One Hundred and Thirty-three (133) FM radio broadcasting authorisations which include new applications from entities whose FM radio stations were closed down after the 2017 FM Audit as well as existing stations which applied for renewal of their expired FM Radio broadcasting authorisations.

This approval from the Board is subject to the applicants attending a sensitisation workshop on the terms and conditions of FM radio broadcasting authorisations.

The workshop shall clarify the legal, regulatory, and technical requirements for the establishment and operation of an FM Radio Broadcasting station, the NCA in a statement said.

It further disclosed that 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 fulfillment of the conditions of the Provisional Authorisation.

By: Rainbowradioonline.com/Ghana

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