AIT back on Air as court ordered NBC to restore license
The suspended African Independent Television, AIT came back on air Friday night following earlier order by a Federal High Court in Abuja that Daar Communications Plc., owners of AIT and Raypower Radio should be re-opened.
The National Broadcasting Commission, NBC Thursday revoked the operating license of Daar Commission for alleged failure of its media outfits to abide by the Commission’s directives as they have violated the provisions of the NBC Act Cap N11 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria and the Nigeria Broadcasting Code.
Both AIT and Ray Power radio went off air after the NBC action but after the court order, the television station particularly was restored on DStv.
At the Federal High Court, Daar Communication Plc, represented by its founder, Raymond Dokpesi in an ex-parte motion which had the Federal Ministry of Information and the Attorney General of the Federation as defendants prayed the court to order the maintenance of status quo ante bellum as at 30th May this year, pending the hearing and determination of its suit challenging the closure of its broadcast stations.
The company also prayed the court to restrain the defendants from blocking and/or interfering with the air waves of Daar Communication Plc in any way and manner howsoever, in its broadcast and airing of news, views, documentaries, or any other legitimate broadcast material that is usually associated with television, radio or social media broadcast pending the hearing and determination of the motion on notice filed along with the ex-parte application.
The plaintiff also prayed the court to restrain the defendants from invading or closing down the premises of Daar Communication, its operations or broadcast services, pending the hearing and determination of the motion on notice filed along with this application.
Alternatively, the plaintiff prayed for an order for maintenance of status quo ante bellum, as at May 30, 2019, pending the hearing and final determination of the Motion on Notice filed along with the ex-parte application.
But the trial Judge, Justice Inyang Ekwo in his ruling, after he had perused the affidavit in support of the ex-parte motion deposed to by one Kelly Elisha and heard from plaintiff counsel, Benson Igbanoi, held that, he woulf not grant prayers one and two of the plaintiff without hearing from other parties.
“I have noted the eight grounds upon which the ex-parte application was hinged, application of this nature must be considered judicially and judiciously, that, I have done.
“I hereby order that parties shall maintain status quo ante bellum as at May 30, 2019 pending the hearing and determination of the motion on notice filed in this case”.
Justice Inyang further ordered the defendants to appear before the court on June 13, 2019 to show cause why they should not be stopped from interfering with the operations of Daar Communication PLC.