This study is on challenge of the freedom of information bill to the broadcast media. The total population for the study is 200 staff of NTA Kaduna. The researcher used questionnaires as the instrument for the data collection. Descriptive Survey research design was adopted for this study. A total of 133 respondents made up human resource managers, broadcasters, editors and junior staff was used for the study. The data collected were presented in tables and analyzed using simple percentages and frequencies
TABLE OF CONTENT
Background to the study
Statement of Problem
Purpose of the Study
Significance of the study
Delimitation /scope of study
Limitation of Study
Review of Related Literature
Summary of Literature Review
RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODOLOGY
Population of Study
Sample and Sampling Techniques
Validity of Instrument
Administration of the Instrument
Method of Data Analysis
DATA PRESENTATION AND ANALYSIS
Data presentation and Analysis
Discussion of Results
SUMMARY, CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATION
- Background of the study
The Freedom of Information Bill (FOI) is a bill that, if passed into law, will give every Nigerian access to information, records and documents held by government bodies and private bodies carrying out public functions. It applies to all arms of government: the Executive, Legislature and Judiciary as well as to all tiers of government: Federal, State and Local Governments. So far, Nigeria has no law which guarantees citizens access to public records and information. On the contrary, many Nigerian laws have secrecy clauses prohibiting the disclosure of information e.g. the official secrets Act, the Criminal Code, the Penal code e.t.c. Restricting access to vital information starves the press of the legal authority to publish or broadcast what they know to be true. The Nigerian press has for many years been accused of sensationalism as against fact-based journalism because their reports appear to be unbacked with evidence. The FOI Bill has gone through three readings and a public hearing and has been passed by the lower chamber of the National Assembly, and at the Senate, it has also passed through three readings and a public hearing awaiting harmonization and presidential assent to become law.
HISTORY OF CASE STUDY
In February 1962, the Broadcasting Company of Northern Nigeria known as BCNN was born. It was commissioned on 15th March, 1962. BCNN was established by the premier of the then Northern region, the Sardauna of Sokoto, Late Sir Ahmadu Bello. He wanted a medium through which he could sell his government’s policies and bring development to the whole of the north, because he felt that the existing Radio Station, the NBC was not giving adequate coverage to his government and indeed the activities of the Northern region. The Station started in monochrome. In 1963, the RTK (Radio Television, Kaduna) arm was established the combination was known and still remained as RTK (Radio Television Kaduna). The television arm was excised from the former Broadcasting Corporation of Northern Nigeria (BCNN) with Decree No. 24 of May 1977 which took effect retrospectively from 1st April, 1976. The station has two (2) 10KW transmitters: Larcan Transmitter installed in April, 1994 and Rhodes and Schwarz (R & S) installed in year 2000, both transmitters are located at No. 99 Isa kaita Road, Kaduna.
Objectives of NTA
The NTA derives its objectives from the overall aims of broadcasting in Nigeria. As a medium of communication, television seeks to enrich life of the average Nigerian by influencing positively his social, cultural, economic, political, and technological thinking. It also brings him news and information about national issues. Besides this, it serves as a source of entertainment. Television promotes cultural awareness and seeks to preserve Nigeria’s rich culture. Through the medium, artistic and intellectual creativity are developed. Therefore, all programmes and coverage should be audience oriented and guided by the nation’s social, political, moral, cultural, scientific, educational and economic goals.
NTA’s Vision and Mission
“To be a World-Class television Network”
“To provide excellent television services worldwide and project the true African perspectives.”
The station (NTA Kaduna) has six departments
The Programmes Department is responsible for planning and producing programmes for transmission; the programs types are light entertainment, drama, variety and documentary.
The department is also responsible for all OB coverages and contributions to networks programmes.
– News Department
The News department is responsible for News and Current Affairs Programmes. It is statutorily vested with the responsibility of gathering and broadcasting News from all sources within the country some of its star programmes are News World, Weekend Panorama, Guests of the Week and Issues of the Moment.
– Engineering Department
The department is responsible for the maintenance of all equipment and daily transmission of programmes. As a Zonal Centre, it contributes to transmission of network programmes. It is equipped to cover and transmit live programmes from any location within the zone.
– Administrative Department
The department is the human resource and personnel arm of the station. It is in charge of policy interpretation and implementation.
– Finance Department
The finance department manages the finances of the station.
– Marketing Department
The marketing department is responsible for the marketing and advertising activities of the station.
Nigerian Television Authority (NTA) Kaduna is located in the heart of the city at No. 7 Yakubu Gowon Way, Kaduna. The station has staff strength of Ninety – Seven (97).
- STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
For over eight years, the protagonists of the Freedom of Information Bill have been toiling to it get passed at the National Assembly. The bill was presented initially in 1999 when the return to democratic governance heightened the expectations that there will be increased disposition towards freer information access by those in power. By August 2004, the House of Representatives passed the Freedom of Information Bill and two years later by 2006, the Senate by a consensus vote passed the same bill. The general problem is that corruption in Nigeria is endemic, pervasive and deep-rooted in the nation’s polity. How easy will it be for the people who are corrupt to be the same people called upon to eliminate/minimize corruption? Unless the lid is opened on the activities of corrupt public officials, it is most likely to abate.
- OBJECTIVE OF THE STDUY
This study shall highlight some of the challenges the delay in the passage of the Freedom of Information Bill pose to the Nigerian media with particular focus on the Nigeria Television Authority (NTA) Kaduna.
Some of the objectives of study include:
- To ascertain what depriving the media the legal authority to publish what they know to be true.
- To ascertain what deprives the media the right to publish or broadcast fact-based reports.
- To ascertain Cause of a major set-back to the growth of Nigeria’s democracy because the most official transactions, both in the public and private sectors are shrouded in secrecy.
- RESAERCH HYPOTHESES
For the successful completion of the study, the following research hypotheses were formulated by the researcher;
H0: The FOI Bill will not promote transparency and accountability in governance.
H1: The FOI Bill will promote transparency and accountability in governance.
H02: The FOI Bill will not give the broadcast media the legal backing to transmit public information.
H2: The FOI Bill will give the broadcast media the legal backing to transmit public information.
- SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
The study will give a clear insight on challenge of the freedom of information bill to the broadcast media. The study will be beneficial to students, broadcast media and the general public. The study will also serve as a reference to other researchers that will embark on this study
- SCOPE AND LIMITATION OF THE STUDY
This study shall highlight the benefits the broadcast media would derive from the bill. It will also look at the challenges (if any) the bill will present to the broadcast media. The researcher encounters some constrain which limited the scope of the study;
- a) AVAILABILITY OF RESEARCH MATERIAL: The research material available to the researcher is insufficient, thereby limiting the study
- b) TIME: The time frame allocated to the study does not enhance wider coverage as the researcher has to combine other academic activities and examinations with the study.
- c) Organizational privacy: Limited Access to the selected auditing firm makes it difficult to get all the necessary and required information concerning the activities
1.7 DEFINITION OF TERMS
CHALLENGE: A call to someone to participate in a competitive situation or fight to decide who is superior in terms of ability or strength
FREEDOM: The power or right to act, speak, or think as one wants.
INFORMATION: Information is any entity or form that provides the answer to a question of some kind or resolves uncertainty. It is thus related to data and knowledge, as data represents values attributed to parameters, and knowledge signifies understanding of real things or abstract concepts
BROADCAST MEDIA: Broadcast media is the most expedient means to transmit information immediately to the widest possible audience, although the Internet currently challenges television as the primary source of both news and other recreational content (e.g., movies, sitcoms, etc.).
BILL: A bill is proposed legislation under consideration by a legislature. A bill does not become law until it is passed by the legislature and, in most cases, approved by the executive. Once a bill has been enacted into law, it is called an act of the legislature, or a statute.
1.8 ORGANIZATION OF THE STUDY
This research work is organized in five chapters, for easy understanding, as follows
Chapter one is concern with the introduction, which consist of the (overview, of the study), historical background, statement of problem, objectives of the study, research hypotheses, significance of the study, scope and limitation of the study, definition of terms and historical background of the study. Chapter two highlights the theoretical framework on which the study is based, thus the review of related literature. Chapter three deals on the research design and methodology adopted in the study. Chapter four concentrate on the data collection and analysis and presentation of finding. Chapter five gives summary, conclusion, and recommendations made of the study