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MICAT Boss To Face House Over Punch FM License Issues

By Bill W. Cooper
Information Minister, Ledgerhood Rennie is expected to appear before members of the House of Representatives to give reason why Punch FM is yet to be given license or permit to operate in the country as a media entity.
The decision for Minister Rennie’s appearance before that august body is as a result of a complaint from Lofa County District 3 Representative, Clarence Massaquoi requesting a full scale investigation into the Ministry’s alleged refusal to issue the proposed media institution permit when other sprouting media institutions were being given licenses in no time.
Rep. Massaquoi is also requesting the MICAT boss to be made to give a comprehensive explanation on the process and procedures leading to the mediation on the issuance of a license or permit to a proposed media institution.
He added, “Approximately a year ago, the Information Ministry discontinued the granting of an operating permit to media institutions on grounds that it needed to review the system. Since this decision, there has been no report to the public on status of the process, especially with claims that some institutions have been served, while others claim being denied.”
Rep. Massaquoi emphasized, “This is not about Punch FM alone. We want to know why the Ministry of Information issued permits to other media institutions and has not given the others permit to operate and if we find out that anything is not right in the Ministry’s decision, I think it will be prudent that plenary takes some immediate action to avoid reoccurrence.”
However, Punch FM is owned by former Liberian Broadcasting System (LBS) Deputy Director General for Technical Services; a fierce critics of the Weah led-administration and a current Public Relations Manager at Firestone Liberia, Patrick Honnah.
The House’s decision to summon MICAT’s boss will be made this Thursday based on a recommendation from its committees on Information, Culture and Tourism.

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