Communiqué of the Seminar on Building Community Radio Broadcasting in Nigeria, held at D’rovans Hotel, Ibadan, from the 17th – 19th December 2003.


A 3-day seminar on “Building Community Radio Broadcasting in Nigeria” jointly organized by Panos Institute West Africa (PIWA), World Association of Community Radio Broadcasters (AMARC) and the Institute for Media and Society (IMS), held at the D’Rovans Hotel, Ibadan from 17 th–19th December 2003.

Participants were drawn from NGOs, CBOs, Development and Donor organizations, the Mass Media, the Academia, and Government agencies. Presentations at the seminar focused on issues on Policy, Legislation and Regulation, Ownership Issues and Editorial Independence, Sustainability and Training and Political, Religious and Ethnic Challenges of Community Radio Broadcasting in Nigeria.

At the end of the deliberations, participants came up with the following conclusions:


National Mass Communication Policy should be reviewed within the framework of the African Charter on Broadcasting and should reflect new developments in the field of Information and Communication Technology (ICT).

The revised policy should take into account the three tiers of broadcasting: public service, private /commercial and community radio.

The concept of “community” in community broadcasting should be seen as encompassing geographical and interest communities.

Licensing fees and tax on turnovers are contradictory to the “not for profit and community development ” principles of community radio and therefore should be abolished.

The African Charter on Broadcasting and other relevant International Conventions to which Nigeria is signatory, should be domesticated into Nigeria laws.

Membership of the Board of the National Broadcasting Commission should be a fair representation of all the stakeholders in the various sub-sectors.

The board of NBC should be appointed by and report to the National Assembly.

The Board should appoint the Director General of National Broadcasting Commission and other staff of the Commission.

Guidelines for licensing of Community Radio should be fair and equitable to all concerned.

Guidelines must be distinct from the code and its making should have the input of stakeholders.

The NBC in accordance with its mandate should actively encourage and promote local expertise and production of broadcast equipment.

The NBC should be the approving and issuing authority of community radio licenses.

Licensing fees, renewal fees, tax on turnover and other related levies for community radio should be abolished.


a. Ownership Issues
Establishment, ownership and operation of community radio should be determined by the needs of the community in order to guarantee ownership.

The broad management of community radio must reflect the diversity of the community however defined.

Funding for community radio should be primarily sourced by the community

b. Editorial Independence
Ownership structure as reflected above will guarantee editorial independence.

Editorial policy of community radio must reflect the diverse needs of the community.

Editorial content in news and programming must be non-partisan; as such it must give coverage to all political, ethnic, religious views and tendencies.


a. Finance
Management of community radio should be based on principles of sound financial management such as transparency and accountability

For sustainability and financial independence, community radio should access advertising income.

There should be an established independent community radio trust fund to which the government and other stakeholders should contribute.

For sustainability, community radio operators should network to share human and material resources.

b. Training
– Community radio must recognize the need for technical and management training.

Community radio should take cognizance of the political, religious and ethnic sensibilities of their operating environments.

Community radio operators should not yield their platform to political party interests.

Community radio operators as an interest group should develop a national platform, appropriate code of conduct and practice for community radio in Nigeria in the spirit of self-regulation.

Institute for Media and Society
Tiwa Systems
Female Leadership Forum (FLF)
NTA 2, Channel 5
Justice Development and Peace Commission
Centre for Peace in Africa
International Press Centre
Information Aid Network
Centre for Enterprise Development and Action Research
Friedrich Ebert Foundation
Committee for the Defence of Human Rights
African Radio Drama Association
Asiwaju Development Society
Life Vanguards
Trade Union, Labour Studies and Human Rights Education
Centre for Appropriate Technology for Rural Women Country Women Association of Nigeria
Fantsuam Foundation
Department of Mass Communication, UNILAG
Onigbongbo Local Government
Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) Oyo State Council
NAWOJ Oyo State
Panos Institute West Africa