Muslim Media Practitioners of Nigeria, MMPN, Oyo State Chapter has called on the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) to sanction an Ibadan-based radio station, Inspiration FM over derogatory remarks made on one of its programmes about Eid-ul-Adha, Muslims’ festival of sacrifice being celebrated by over 1.8 billion Muslims worldwide.
The Muslim media body said it has become stock-in-trade for the radio station to attack Islam and the Muslims through Olufe Otito, one of its controversial Yoruba-Christian programmes aired by the outfit.
The call was contained in a statement by the Chairman, Oyo State Chapter of MMPN, Alhaji Ridwan Fasasi addressed to the Zonal Director, NBC, Ibadan Zonal Office.
A copy of the letter was also forwarded to the Oyo State Commissioner for Information, National Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs,
Aare Musulumi of Yorubaland, Edo & Delta
Muslim Ummah of Southwest Nigeria (MUSWEN), Oyo State Muslim Community, Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC), NACOMYO, Oyo State Political Awareness Group, PAG, and MMPN National led by Alhaji AbdurRahman Balogun.
It reads, “This is to call your attention to the unprofessional, unethical and flagrant disobedience to the constituted authority by Inspiration FM, 100.5, Ibadan through one of its Yoruba-Christian programmes, ‘Olufe Otito’ which has for quite sometimes now been directly attacking Islam and its adherents.
“There have been reports to our Association in the last few weeks over the way the programme, which is broadcast live from 15:00 to 16:00 hrs on Sundays openly disparage Islam and spread falsehood about the religion.
“The unchallenged acts and the impunity of the station as well as the presenters got to a peak last Sunday, 26th July when the focus of the programme was to denigrate and defame one of the Prophets of Allah, Ismail who was an ancestor of Prophet Muhammad (SAW) as a hoodlum and a nonentity.
“The presenter described the origin of Eidul-Kabir, which happened to be the story of how Prophet Ibrahim had wanted to sacrifice his son, Ismail in fulfilment of the promise made to Allah as fabricated and a fallacy. In fact, there were unprintable and derogatory remarks made by the presenters against Islam and the lineage of Prophet Muhammad (SAW).
“To this end, the obvious truth is that the presenter as well as the anchor violated all the provisions of NBC codes on religious broadcast. The programme was not decent, it contained an attack and at the same time it ridiculed another religion. The presenter derogatorily used names, words and symbols regarded as sacred by adherents of other religions.”
MMPN requested an immediate investigation into the matter, saying the radio station must be sanctioned if found culpable.
“To this end, NBC as a regulatory body should as a matter of urgency investigate the matter and hold Inspiration FM responsible for contents transmitted on its facility while the station, the presenter and the anchor should be sanctioned appropriately.
“Our prayer to your office is that this attack must stop as the programme is an incitement to cause public disorder and plunge the country into religious crisis as witnessed in the past.
“The NBC should also intensify its supervisory role and ensure regular monitoring of especially religious programmes mostly in private stations as ‘Olufe Otito’ should have been off air since inception!”
The association also presented a CD evidence, containing recorded version of the programme for easy investigations by the authorities.