The 5th Edition of the Nigeria Broadcasting Code was on Friday in Abuja formally presented to operators and other stakeholders in the industry.
The code was unveiled at a ceremony, which also coincided with the 20th anniversary celebration of the Nigeria Broadcasting Commission (NBC).
The code is a set of regulations guiding operators and other stakeholders in the industry. The new code comprises 14 chapters, each of which touch on relevant areas of broadcasting regulation in the country.
Gov. Aliyu Wamakko of Sokoto State, who unveiled the new code, urged the media to take advantage of some provisions in the document to chart a new course for the country's transformation.
He said the media had a duty to redeem the country's image by portraying those aspects of the code that could attract foreign investors.
"I appeal to the media to help in building the nation and in redeeming our battered image abroad.
"Some foreigners see Nigerians as bad people and the country as a bad place to live in, but we are good people; let us show this because nobody else will do it for us."
In his remarks, the Minister of Information, Labaran Maku, said the new code offer opportunity for the rapid growth of the industry.
Maku, who was optimistic that the 5th edition of the code would go a long way in safeguarding media practice in the country, stressed the need for both operators and regulator in the industry to adjust to the challenges of media convergence.
He said that further amendments to laws in the industry would curb the dangers that were inherent in the new communication technologies.
He called for greater responsibility on the part of journalists to avoid the abuse of privileges provided in the new broadcasting code and the Freedom of Information Act.
On his part, Yomi Bolarinwa, the director general of the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC), said the new code was a product of the aspirations of the stakeholders for quality broadcast.
He said the new code captured emerging trends in the industry such as digitisation, internet broadcasting and hyping amongst others.
"We will continue to gauge what is good for our own country.
"The Nigeria Broadcasting Code is committed to meeting the aspirations of the people of Nigeria for quality programming.
"That is why we periodically review the code in conjunction with other stakeholders so that our broadcast industry can respond to emerging trends in the world."
Bolarinwa attributed the achievements recorded in the industry in the last few years to the foundation laid by the pioneer as well as past management and members of staff of the commission.
He assured broadcast operators and audience that NBC, in the years to come, would not fail to deliver on its mandate of providing quality regulation in the industry.
Raymond Dokpesi, who spoke on behalf of broadcasting organisations in the country, commended the commission for the strides made in the industry in the past 20 years.
He said that the operators wanted more in terms of regulations that would address emerging challenges in the industry.
Dokpesi said that recent programming on some Direct-to-Home (DTH) channels were not in the interest of some broadcast audience in the country, and urged the government through the regulator, to provide a more neutral ground for operators in the industry.
He said that a situation where government-owned media organisations were given better opportunities to thrive at the detriment of their private counterparts was not in the interest of the genuine growth of the industry.
Also speaking, Sen. Eyinaya Abaribe, the chairman, Senate Committee on Information, assured stakeholders that the National Assembly would continue to encourage growth in the industry.
He said that the National Assembly remained committed to supporting the industry through regular amendments to the laws.
The event was attended by stakeholders in the industry as well as past and present DGs, management and staff of the NBC.source: allAfrica