Our attention has been drawn to an allegation on social media that a presidential candidate in the forthcoming general election was denied airtime on Radio Nigeria by the Federal Government.
The Management of the Federal Radio Corporation of Nigeria was not aware that the said candidate officially approached Radio Nigeria for any interview.
However, on inquiry, we discovered that the candidate of the African Action Congress (AAC), Omoyele Sowore, through his aide, had attempted to access our airtime through one of our reporters.
When the reporter approached the relevant authorities, she was instructed to ask the candidate to come for pre-recording of the interview on a date to be scheduled.
At no time did anybody in Radio Nigeria arrange with Mr. Sowore or his Aides to come for an interview by 4: 00 pm on Thursday, 18th October, 2018.
Besides, 4pm is the time for our news bulletin, which is a 30- minute programme.
It is instructive that the News Directorate of Radio Nigeria does not have any one hour personality interview programme.
Therefore, it is unthinkable that any reporter in the organization could have arranged for a one-hour interview with anybody.
Again, campaigns for next year’s Presidential Election will commence on the 18th of November this year; and the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, has warned against untimely campaigns.
Consequently, any interview conducted with any candidate now can only be recorded and used at the appropriate time.
In conclusion, we wish to place on record that the Federal Government does not interfere in the day-to-day operations of the Federal Radio Corporation of Nigeria. It is therefore preposterous and baseless for anyone to claim that President Muhammadu Buhari or any official of government barred his arranged interview with Radio Nigeria.
Radio Nigeria is always committed to its motto which is “Uplifting the People and Uniting the Nation”.
See Sowore’s allegations on Twitter below: