…To Give LBS Public Broadcaster Status
The Reporters Association of Liberia has welcomed the submission of a bill seeking to make the Liberia Broadcasting System a Public Broadcaster.
The Law which was submitted by Bong County Representative George Mulbah will give greater voice to the public over the state broadcaster, and remove political influence on the operations of LBS.
Currently the Liberia Broadcasting is led by presidential appointees, who hold loyalty to the president and ruling party to certain extent, thereby reducing the chances of oppositions to fully utilize the state broadcaster mainly during the political seasons.
In a statement released in Monrovia over the weekend, RAL says transforming the Liberia Broadcasting System in to public broadcaster will reduce fear of dismissal by the appointing authority of managers who give equal airtime to critics of government or the ruling party.
The group recounted how a live commentator during President Johnson-Sirleaf’s last state of the nation address at the legislature was insulted and bullied by Information Minister Eugene Nagbe for giving air time to an opposition to criticize the president.
RAL pointed out that this would not have happened if LBS were not under the direct supervision of the Executive Branch, where the Minister of Information is the statutory chairman of the board.
The bill accordingly, seeks to repeal the Public Authorities Law of Chapter 87, titled 30 of Liberian Code of Laws Revised of the People’s Redemption Council (PRC) Decree No. 20, to establish the National Public Service Broadcaster to be known as the Liberia National Broadcasting Corporation (LNBC).
Under the new law, those who will head the LNBC would be nominated by the Ministry of Posts and Telecommunications, Press Union of Liberia, Liberia National Bar Association, Liberia Chambers of Commerce, Inter-Religious Council of Liberia, National Teachers Association of Liberia and Civil Society Organizations.