President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the sum of N654million to used in combating illegal radio transmission across the South-East, with his administration declaring such practices as a major threat to national security.
Mr. Buhari chaired today’s FEC meeting where the decision was taken following a presentation from communications and digital economy minister Isa Pantami.
The fund was released to procure and deploy a hybrid spectrum monitoring system that will cover the southern part of the country, most importantly the South-East, a State House pool report said.
Mr. Pantami said 106 of 320 frequencies were uncovered as illegal through an investigation that was conducted across the Northeast, Northwest, North-Central, Southwest and South-South.
Attorney-General Abubakar Malami recommended prosecution of all illegal frequency operators, describing the practice as too rampant and dangerous.
“This is very worrisome because the usage of this illegal spectrum or frequencies will compromise our security and safety in the country,” the minister said.
“It is because of the agenda of President Muhammadu Buhari on promoting security that we came up with this initiative of monitoring the usage of frequencies and uncovering the legal and the illegal ones,” he said.
Radio Biafra, operated by outlawed IPOB leader Nnamdi Kanu, has been one of the most popular stations operating on questionable frequencies for years. The station frequently changes its frequencies after every government crackdown.
IPOB was outlawed by the Nigeian government in 2018. Mr. Kanu has since fled the country, but has continued to beam anti-Nigerian commentary from his hideout abroad.