NCA inaugurates facility to monitor broadcast content

The National Communications Authority (NCA) yesterday inaugurated a new Broadcasting Monitoring Centre (BMC) in Accra to help monitor broadcast content in the country.

The BMC would help improve on the NCA’s capability to fully monitor the Broadcasting sector and also expand its Broadcast Monitoring System (BMS).

NCA in line with its mandate under section 62 of the Electronic Communications Act 2008, Act 775, is clothed with the power to monitor the quality of service of television and FM radio broadcasting services.

The Board Chairman of NCA, Mr Isaac E. Osei-Bonsu (Jnr), said the BMC would “provide a classic example of how the provision of systems or solutions by one Agency could be useful and critical for the other Agencies.”

He said the BMC would provide information to the various agencies when needed for investigations, verification, providing a digital plug for the recording and storing of broadcasting content in a digital manner and format.

“Again, the BMC also shows how State Agencies can collaborate and harness each other’s systems, solutions and data to impact on their delivery without having to face obstacles or hurdles when sourcing for information critical to their work”

“This is also the concept that the SIM Database or Registry is also intended to take. While the BMC and the SIM Registry will make it easy for State Agencies to access information or data, the difference is that State Agencies will have to provide the relevant court orders to have access to SIM Related data to protect the subscriber and to comply with the tenets of the Data protection Act whereas information from the BMC will require no such requirements, given that the content has already been published in the public domain,” he said.

Mr Osei-Bonsu (Jnr) said until 2018, monitoring the quality of broadcasting services required human intervention which phased out due to the implementation of the BMS system.

The Director General, NCA, Mr Joe Anokye, said“In 2021, there was widespread public concern about the negative repercussions of the ritualists contents of television stations that entertained spiritualists as well as charlatanic advertisements which mislead a large sections on of the public,” he said.

That, he said, prompted the stakeholders to brainstormon ideas and ways in todealing with the issue.

He said the NCA last year signed a Memorandum of Cooperation with the National Media Commission to regulate Broadcast Content which had helped in establishing the BMC to provide the required technical support for the objectives of the Memorandum of Cooperation.

Mr Anokye said the new system had 16 satellite receivers and monitors, all 13 satellites providing Free to Air (FTA) satellite TV services over the territory.

The Executive Secretary of NMC, Dr George Sarpong, commended NCA for setting up the BMC and was optimistic that it would help promote the broadcasting of goon content to accelerate national development.


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