In Ghana, a monitoring exercise focusing on satellite Free-To-Air television platforms has revealed 49 television stations operating without licences. Leading the exercise was the National Communications Authority (NCA) of Ghana. The authority’s whose primary mandate is to license media houses and organisations in Ghana used a Broadcast Monitoring System (BMS) and the Radio Spectrum Monitoring System (RSMS), which revealed that some channels were operating without valid authorisation from NCA.
Upon acting on the BMS and RSMS results leads, NCA released a statement to the press. They highlighted that the identified unlicenced TV stations were operating contrary to Section 2(4) of the Electronic Communication Act 77f of 2008. The Act clearly states that ‘Except as provided by this Act or any other law not inconsistent with this Act, a person shall not operate a broadcasting system or provide a broadcasting service without a frequency authorisation by the Authority’.
The authority has also release information relating to their response to the operating of unlicenced TV stations. According to the statement released, stations that have been closed down include Kwaku Bonsam TV, Appl TV, Iron TV, Ice1 TV, Abapa TV, Thunder TV, Face TV, Serwa TV, Lion TV, Nazareth TV, NTV and other TV stations.
The NCA has committed to continued monitoring through BMS and RSMS systems to ensure that the use of spectrum is conducted efficiently. The authority said they would like to caution all licence and authorisation holders to ensure that their licences and authorisations are always up to date and in compliance with the stated terms and conditions.
As highlighted in various media sources, the exercise is said to be carried out by NCA in conjunction with the Ghana Police Service and the National Security Intelligence Operatives.