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General News of Friday, 22 April 2016

Source: Tv3network.com

Rule on media law before campaign starts – NMC begs Supreme Court

The National Media Commission (NMC) has prayed the Supreme Court, as early as possible, to give its ruling on a case involving media contents and standards in Ghana before the electioneering campaign hots up.

Even though the Commission believes the LI on Content Standards Regulations would boost its mandate of ensuring a free and vibrant media that functions within the law, the Ghana Independent Broadcasters Association (GIBA) would not buy that.

The law requires media houses to submit content and program line-ups to the Commission for approval.

But the Ghana Independent Broadcasters Association filed a suit challenging the constitutionality of the law claiming it infringes on press freedom.

Only Thursday, GIBA secured an interlocutory injunction against the implementation of the law at the Supreme Court.

The National Media Commission responded to the ruling with a statement expressing some concerns.

“It is the prayer of the Commission that the Court will be able to give its judgment before commencement of the election campaigns.

“While abiding by the ruling, the NMC will like to assure the public of its determination to uphold its constitutional mandate of ensuring a free and vibrant media that functions within the law and puts the national interest above any other consideration.”

Below is the full statement

STATEMENT ON THE SUPREME COURT RULING ON THE GIBA APPLICATION FOR INTERLOCUTORY INJUCTION ON LI2224

The National Media Commission has taken note of the Supreme Court Ruling on the application for interlocutory injunction filed by the Ghana Independent Broadcasters Association. The substantive matter regarding the interpretation and enforcement of the recently passed law on media contents and standards is still pending before the Court.

The Content Standards Regulations (LI2224) came into force on 9th December 2015 and its implementation was set to begin three months from the date of entry into force. In accordance with the Supreme Court ruling, the NMC is obliged to suspend the implementation until the final determination of the matter.

It is the prayer of the Commission that the Court will be able to give its judgment before commencement of the election campaigns. While abiding by the ruling, the NMC will like to assure the public of its determination to uphold its constitutional mandate of ensuring a free and vibrant media that functions within the law and puts the national interest above any other consideration.

Kwasi Gyan-Apenteng

Chairman, National Media Commission