Are you interested in owning a media outfit? If yes, read the step-by-step guide on how to own a TV station in Nigeria.
Over the years, the Media has stood out as a major, commanding force when it comes to events of the day.
The media informs, it makes and mars the careers of many, it triggers mass reactions when a particular piece of information is passed, it influences public perception, it even piles intense pressure on government authorities depending on the prevailing issue.
It is difficult, if not impossible, to go about anything of note these days without involving the media.
To this extent, it is commonplace to see more than a few people try hard to get involved with the media, one way or another.
Some want to land a permanent gig on a popular TV or radio show, some strive to get their own TV shows, and then there are those that want it all: they want their own TV stations!
True enough, there are quite a number of individuals in Nigeria who have distinguished themselves by starting and managing TV stations. (The case of Silverbird Television’s Ben Murray-Bruce readily comes to mind).
However, emerging as the proprietor of a successful TV station is not an issue of cakes and ale. There are the not-so-small matters of procedure, paperwork, finance, consistency and perseverance.
The processes involved in owning a TV station in Nigeria will be discussed below. While the following steps are not exhaustive, they definitely provide a useful guide as to what it means to run a TV station in these parts.
#1. Registration: An individual who intends to own a TV station in Nigeria must have a limited liability company with the Corporate Affairs Commission, and the Memorandum and Articles of Association of such a company must include Broadcasting.
#2. Approval: Once the said company has been registered, it must write to the Corporate Affairs Commission seeking approval to purchase a set of application forms, indicating the kind of service (in this case, television) intended.
#3. Application: A company whose request to the CAC has been approved may then purchase a set of application forms at the cost of N50,000.00 (fifty thousand naira only). This would also include a copy of the Nigeria Broadcasting Code and other publications that provide information about broadcasting in Nigeria.
#4. Feasibility/Assessment: The forms should be returned to the Director-General of the National Broadcasting Commission of Nigeria (NBC), and should include a feasibility study and business plan of the proposed TV station.
#5. Processing/Transmission: Upon receipt of the forms, the National Broadcasting Commission is expected to process the application and forward same to the President of the country, through the Minister of Information and Communications.
#6. Approval/Licensing: Notwithstanding the functions of the NBC and the procedures undertaken by the applicant, it is the President of the country who has the constitutional power to give final approval when it comes to licensing TV stations.
Once the approval is granted, the successful applicant is expected to pay the prescribed licence fee and sign a licence agreement with the Secretary to the NBC before being allocated an appropriate frequency.
The lifespan of a TV station licence is five years, and is of course subject to renewal. An application for renewal of a TV licence must be made to the NBC within a period of six months before the expiration of the licence. This application for renewal may also renew a public hearing, as the NBC “holds the airwaves in trust for the public”, and as such, the licensee is accountable to the public.
The procedure involved in acquiring ownership of a TV station in Nigeria is by no means an easy one, but then again, nothing good ever came on a platter. It is hoped that prospective owners of TV stations take a cursory look at the above steps, and benefit from proper guidance.
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