June 8, 2019

Court overrules NBC on AIT, RayPower


AIT, Raypower

By Ikechukwu Nnochiri

The Federal High Court in Abuja, on Friday, granted an ex-parte order that restored the operating license of DAAR Communications Plc, owners of African Independent Television, AIT, and Ray Power FM, which was earlier suspended by the National Broadcasting Commission, NBC.

AIT, Raypower

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The court ordered both DAAR Communications Plc and NBC to revert to the status quo that was in existence as at May 30, pending the hearing and determination of the substantive suit before it.

The order followed a suit the media establishment lodged to challenge the suspension of its operating licence on Thursday by the NBC.

The NBC had based its action on allegation that the media outfit breached its rules and regulations.

Meanwhile, cited as Respondents in the suit the plaintiff filed through its lawyer, Chief Mike Ozekhome, SAN, were the NBC, the Federal Ministry of Information and Culture (FMIC) and the Attorney General of the Federation, AGF.

The plaintiff equally filed an affidavit of urgency, wherein it urged the court to quickly intervene in the matter.

Out of three principal reliefs that DAAR Communications Plc sought in its motion ex-parte, the court declined to grant two of them.

Specifically, the plaintiff had sought to restrain the Respondents, their agents or privies, from interfering with their operations in any manner whatsoever, pending the determination of their application for injunctive reliefs.

However, in his ruling, Justice Inyang Ekwo, said he was minded to grant the alternative relief to restore the status quo that was in existence as at when the matter was brought before the court for adjudication.