Olalekan Adetayo, Abuja
The Nigeria Police Force, Nigeria Customs Service and the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps are among 52 organisations that have just been granted radio licences by the National Broadcasting Commission.
They are joining others like the Armed Forces and the Federal Road Safety Corps that currently operate Defence Radio and Traffic Radio respectively.
Defence Radio has been operating on 107.7FM Abuja while Traffic Radio is on 107.1FM Abuja.
According to a statement by the NBC’s Public Affairs Department on Sunday, 43 organisations were granted FM radio broadcasting licences; eight institutions got campus FM radio broadcasting licences; one firm was granted community FM radio broadcasting licences and 13 companies were granted free-view digital terrestrial television licences.
The commission said the licences were granted following the approval by the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.).
One of the companies that got radio licences, according to the statement, is Rhola Vision Engineering Limited with 36, Gobarau Road, Kaduna, as its address.
The firm came into limelight when the 8th Senate’s Ad Hoc Committee on Mounting Humanitarian Crisis in the North-East probed allegations of violations of law and due process made against the then Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Babachir Lawal, in the award of contracts under the Presidential Initiative on the North-East.
The committee’s chairman, Shehu Sani, had told members of the 8th Senate that investigations showed that the firm, which Lawal founded in 1990, was awarded a contract of N270m to clear grasses at an Internally Displaced Persons’ camp in Yobe State.
Although he admitted founding the company, Lawal claimed that he resigned from the firm on August 18, 2015 when he was appointed SGF.
Lawal was suspended in April 2017 and later sacked in October of the same year based on the recommendation of a panel headed by Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo which investigated the allegation.
The committee had the Attorney General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami (SAN); and the National Security Adviser, Babagana Monguno, as members.
Apart from the NPF, NCS, NSCDC and Rhola Vision Engineering Limited, three newspaper companies also got radio licences.
They are Blueprint Newspapers Limited, Media Trust Limited and the Leadership Group (Leadership Radio Network).
Blueprint Newspapers Limited was also granted a licence for free-view digital terrestrial television with national coverage.
The only community radio licence went to AMAC Community Radio Initiative and it will be located in Karshi, Abuja.
The institutions that got campus radio licences are Abubakar Tatari Ali Polytechnic, Bauchi; Federal Polytechnic, Nasarawa; Akwa Ibom State University, Akwa Ibom; Ambrose Ali University, Ekpoma, Edo State; Temple Gate Polytechnic, Aba, Abia State; Audu Gusau Polytechnic, Talata Mafara, Zamfara State; Nuhu Bamalli Polytechnic, Zaria, Kaduna State and Federal Polytechnic, Ilaro, Ogun State.