NBC cautions broadcast stations against airing hate speeches

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Independent television producer Dan Ikpoyi, 32, a Christian from Nigeria's delta region, sits for a portrait in a production room at a television station in Lagos January 29, 2015. Ikpoyi feels that both campaigns are creating tension within the population and says he fears for his safety while covering the vote. "The fact that the election was postponed casts a big question mark on the credibility of the election itself. The party in government is indicted in this and it means anything can happen afterwards," Ikpoyi said. Reuters photographer Akintunde Akinleye photographed Nigerians and asked them about their views on the elections as well as their hopes and concerns for the country. Nigeria's agreement to delay this week's election on the advice of security forces creates a worrying echo for some of the annulment of 1993's democratic vote by a military government. The election in Africa's biggest economy, initially scheduled to take place this Saturday, was set to be the closest fought since the end of military dictatorship in 1999. President Goodluck Jonathan is seeking re-election in a contest with main opposition candidate Muhammadu Buhari, himself a former military ruler. REUTERS/Akintunde Akinleye (NIGERIA - Tags: MEDIA POLITICS ELECTIONS SOCIETY PORTRAIT) ATTENTION EDITORS: PICTURE 10 OF 15 FOR WIDER IMAGE PACKAGE 'NIGERIA: VOICE OF THE PEOPLE' SEARCH 'VOX POP' FOR ALL IMAGES - RTR4P5RV

Independent television producer Dan Ikpoyi, 32, a Christian from Nigeria's delta region, sits for a portrait in a production room at a television station in Lagos January 29, 2015. Ikpoyi feels that both campaigns are creating tension within the population and says he fears for his safety while covering the vote. "The fact that the election was postponed casts a big question mark on the credibility of the election itself. The party in government is indicted in this and it means anything can happen afterwards," Ikpoyi said. Reuters photographer Akintunde Akinleye photographed Nigerians and asked them about their views on the elections as well as their hopes and concerns for the country. Nigeria's agreement to delay this week's election on the advice of security forces creates a worrying echo for some of the annulment of 1993's democratic vote by a military government. The election in Africa's biggest economy, initially scheduled to take place this Saturday, was set to be the closest fought since the end of military dictatorship in 1999. President Goodluck Jonathan is seeking re-election in a contest with main opposition candidate Muhammadu Buhari, himself a former military ruler.  REUTERS/Akintunde Akinleye (NIGERIA - Tags: MEDIA POLITICS ELECTIONS SOCIETY PORTRAIT) ATTENTION EDITORS: PICTURE 10 OF 15 FOR WIDER IMAGE PACKAGE 'NIGERIA: VOICE OF THE PEOPLE' SEARCH 'VOX POP' FOR ALL IMAGES - RTR4P5RV

The Nigerian Broadcasting Commission (NBC) on Thursday cautioned broadcast stations in the country against airing hate speeches during sermons.

The commission’s Zonal Director, North East, Dr Igomo Onoja, gave the directive in a statement issued in Jalingo.

He also directed that religious sermons should henceforth not be aired live.

Onoja said the warning was prompted by the security challenges in the country.

He added that sermons must adhere to the principle of decent language, devoid of attack or ridicule.

“Broadcasts shall not contain any content that is likely to encourage or incite the commission of crime or lead to public disorder,’’ he warned.

According to him, the directive is in conformity with the provisions of the Nigerian Broadcast Code on religious broadcast.

He then urged broadcast stations to adhere strictly to the guidelines as any breach would attract sanction.

(NAN)