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Dokpesi says Buhari can’t bar AIT, it’ll bring back Decree 4

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The proprietor of Daar Communications PLC, operators of AIT, Raymond Dokpesi, says the president-elect, Muhammadu Buhari lacks the power to stop the AIT from covering his activities, as doing so would amount to breaking the law.

According to him, this was an attempt by the former military Head of State to bring back the era of Decree 4, adding, that Section 39 of the constitution grants Nigerians freedom of expression and the right to hold opinion.

Dokpesi in an interview granted Premium Times, said “I am sure that the President-elect needs to be reminded of Decree 4, and he should be clearly reminded that section 32 of the constitution makes it mandatory for the media to hold public officials accountable to the people,” he said.

“There are three national networks available for national coverage in Nigeria, the NTA, AIT and Silverbird. You cannot stop a foremost private station from reporting in Nigeria, it brings us back to Decree 4 era.”

Mr. Dokpesi also acknowledged that Mr. Buhari may have taken his decision based on the documentaries ran by the station during the electioneering campaign.

He said Daar Communications is a commercial entity and therefore reserves the right to run anything it considers worthy of being televised. He said there is also a right of response available to anyone who feels strongly about any matter broadcast by the station.

“If they had produced their own documentary to say this is what we want and AIT did not publish it, then that is another matter,” he said.

Dokpesi also added that another documentary about one of the national leaders of APC, Bola Tinubu were also factually correct.

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0 Comments

  1. Don Lucassi

    April 29, 2015 at 3:14 pm

    …playing with fire

  2. Swagtyt

    April 29, 2015 at 5:32 pm

    what does he mean by DECREE 4

  3. Apachee zooma

    April 30, 2015 at 10:03 am

    Swag, that means you be pikin when Buhari been dey display as military Head of State.

  4. Don Lucassi

    April 30, 2015 at 12:29 pm

    The law was drafted to punish authors of false statements and reports
    that exposed the Buhari administration and or its officials to ridicule
    or contempt.
    Section 1, sub-sections (i), (ii) and (iii) of the law – the most formidable section – provided that:
    Any
    person who publishes in any form, whether written or otherwise, any
    message,rumour, report or statement, being a message, rumour, statement
    or report which is false in any material particular or which brings or
    is calculated to bring the Federal Military Government or the Government
    of a state or public officer to ridicule or disrepute, shall be guilty
    of an offence under this Decree.

    Any station for wireless
    telegraphy which conveys or transmits any sound or visual message,
    rumour, report or statement, being a message, rumour, report or
    statement which is false in any material particular or which brings or
    is calculated to bring the Federal Government or the Government of a
    state or a public officer to ridicule or disrepute, shall be guilty of
    an offence under this Decree.

    It shall be an offence under this
    Decree for a newspaper or wireless telegraphy station in Nigeria to
    publish or transmit any message, rumour, report or statement which is
    false in any material particular stating that any public officer has in
    any manner been engaged in corrupt practices or has in any manner
    comiptly enriched himself or any other person {Gazette, 1984).

  5. Don Lucassi

    April 30, 2015 at 12:29 pm

    The law also conferred on the Head of State the power to ban a newspaper
    and to revoke the license of a wireless telegraph station in any part
    of the federation if such action was construed to be in the interest of
    the nation.

    Section 2, sub-sections (i) and (ii) of the law provided that:

    Where
    the Head of the Federal Military Government is satisfied that the
    unrestricted circulation in Nigeria of a newspaper is or may be
    detrimental to the interest of the federation or any part thereof, he
    may by order published in the Gazette, prohibit the circulation in the
    federation or in any part thereof, as the case may require, of that
    newspaper; and, unless any other period is prescribed in the code, the
    prohibition shall continue for a period of twelve months unless sooner
    revoked or extended, as the case may require.

    Where the Head of
    the Federal Military Government is satisfied that the unrestricted
    existence in Nigeria of any wireless telegraphy station is detrimental
    to the interest of the federation or any part thereof, he may by an
    order published in the Gazette (a) revoke the license to such wireless
    telegraphy station under the provisions of the Wireless Telegraphy Act
    of 1961; or (b) order the closure or forfeiture to the Federal Military
    Government, as the case may be, of the wireless telegraphy station
    concerned (Gazette 1984).

  6. Don Lucassi

    April 30, 2015 at 12:30 pm

    Swagtyt, now you know Decree 4

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