Licence ban lifted, TV stations fined Sh500,000 each

February 7, 2015 6:13 am
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CA Chairman Ngene Gituku says lifting of the suspension will however be based on four conditions which the three media houses must fulfil within seven working days from Friday February 6, 2015/FILE
CA Chairman Ngene Gituku says lifting of the suspension will however be based on four conditions which the three media houses must fulfil within seven working days from Friday February 6, 2015/FILE
NAIROBI, Kenya, Feb 7 – The Communications Authority of Kenya (CA) has lifted the suspension of the digital broadcasting license for the Nation Media Group, Royal Media Services and The Standard Media Group.

CA Chairman Ngene Gituku says lifting of the suspension will however be based on four conditions which the three media houses must fulfil within seven working days from Friday February 6, 2015.

Among the conditions is paying a penalty of Sh500,000 each, making a commitment not to run any misleading advertisements, not to engage in unfair competitive behaviour and as well as not distribute their Set Top Boxes (STBs) without type-approval.

“Upon the receipt of an appeal from Africa Digital Network (ADN) to reinstate their self-provisioning license, the Authority’s Board of Directors has made deliberations on the matter and have agreed that the authority shall lift the suspension and resume the processing of the self-provisioning license only after the consortium meets four conditions,” Gituku said during a media briefing on Friday.

The administrative action by the authority was as a result of what the CA termed as misleading advertisement carried by the three media houses against consumers buying GOtv and Startimes STBs.

READ: Court mutes ‘defamatory’ adverts against GOtv

“The advertisement by the three media houses was misleading to the public and was offensive to the market,” Gituku maintained.

Speaking at the same briefing CA Director General Francis Wangusi went ahead to clarify that the self-provisioning license which is being given to ADN will be for providing pay television services and not distributing signals.

“The self provisioning license falls under the pay TV services. But what we are telling them is they must have at least 5 Free to Air channels of their choice. But the BSD (Broadcasting Signal Distribution) licenses we only gave out are only two,” Wangusi explained.

He reiterated that the BSD license will not be issued at the moment but if announced, it will be an international tender and not in favour of anyone including the local stations.

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