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“Don’t Give Non-Compliant Media Grant” -Information Minister Warns Int’l Partners

The Minister of Information, Culture and Tourism, Ledgerhood Rennie, has cautioned international partners not to give grants to radio stations that are not in compliant with government’s regulations.
Making remarks at the celebration marking the 12 observance of World Radio Day, Min. Rennie said judging from statistics available to him, most of the radio stations across the country are not in compliance with government’s regulations therefore as community radio stations celebrate world radio day, it is his wish that managers be in compliance with the Government of Liberia.
Rennie called on community radio to work in compliance with the laws either by obtaining permits or frequency licenses from the Liberia Telecommunications Authority.
He emphasized that partners will not want to work with radio stations that are not in compliance with government’s regulations noting, “Today radio stations are operating without compliance that is a shame.”
“As radio stations, you are part and parcel of the country’s development hence, it is important for us to be in conformity with the law and that means compliance whether it is paying your regular permit at the Ministry of Information or obtaining your frequency from the Liberia Telecommunication Authority. It is quite important,” he reminded.
He thanked the international partners for their continuous support to the level of work done by the Liberian media in working for the development of Liberia adding that there is no doubt that a pluralistic, professional and free media will lead to the strengthening of our peace, democracy and the development of Liberia.
He recapped that the radio is a powerful tool and journalists should be responsible in executing their reportorial duties adding that this tool is an important tool that can do a lot for any given society or country if used wisely especially during this electioneering year.
“On this world radio day, I take the opportunity to beg you, owners of radio stations across Liberia, to just regularize your status. Radio stations are not above the law but please try your best to pay,” he admonished.
He promised journalists that though no one is going to close radio stations down for not being in compliance under the George Weah-led administration and not under his watchful eyes as Minister of Information Culture and Tourism but equally so media practitioners cannot be the same ones criticizing the government when the government goes wrong and they be operating illegally.
“I encourage Internews to encourage them to be in compliance and if they are not in compliance they should not be entitle to grant because they will be operating illegally and I am sure the partners don’t want to work with illegal radio stations so let’s be in compliance”
He closed by admonishing Liberians to not tear the country apart because they want to choose their leaders because if they do so, which country will their leaders lead.
He urged journalists to be a little more careful in how they go about their respective responsibilities during the electioneering process.
He reiterated the government’s commitment to a free, fair, transparent and democratic election in an environment that the media will thrive and do its work to ensuring that all of the various political facets of the country have equal opportunity to the airwaves. Report by Klayde Scott

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