THE Independent Broadcasting Authority (IBA) says the harassment and threats of violence on broadcasting stations is unfortunate.

In a statement, Monday, IBA Director General Josephine Mapoma said complaints or any misgivings about media coverage must be made to the station within three months of the broadcast.

“The IBA has reiterated its position that harassment and threats of violence on a broadcasting station is unfortunate. The Authority’s position has always been that persons should follow laid down procedures of registering their grievances about any broadcast material with which they are aggrieved. Further, complaints or any misgivings about media coverage must be made to the station within three months of the broadcast. Should the station fail to make good or correct the complaint raised within fourteen days, then the complaint can be addressed to the IBA,” Mapoma stated.

“In an unfortunate circumstance that harassment or threats of violence occur, against a person and or a broadcasting station, the incident must be reported to the police because radio and television stations are strategic installations and the police are duly mandated to maintain law and order.”

Mapoma called on broadcasting stations to air content that met the highest ethical professional journalism standards.

“The newly appointed IBA Board has embarked on a countrywide familiarization and sensitization visit of broadcasting stations. The Board has so far visited Southern, Copperbelt, North-Western and Luapula Provinces. The Board has also called on stations to broadcast content that meets the highest ethical and professional journalism standards in accordance with section 33 of the IBA Ac No. 17 of 2002.The IBA Board has also urged stations to adhere to licensing conditions including payment of Annual Operating Fees in accordance with Section 19 (1) of the IBA Act (Amendment) No. 26 of 2010 which prohibits the provision of broadcasting services without a broadcasting license,” Mapoma stated.

“Further, the Board has also called on stations to engage relevant protective wings to provide added security as and when needed at the stations. The IBA board comprises of the Chairperson Mrs Mabel Mung’omba, Vice Chairperson- Mr Chalimba Phiri, Mr Amos Malupenga, Sr Beatrice Mwansa, Ms Claire Limbwambwa, MsMargaret Siwale, Ms Enita Hamatumbika and Mr Clement Ng’andu.”

Meanwhile, Mapoma thanked broadcasting stations for the role they played in disseminating COVID-19 messages.

“Further, the IBA has thanked broadcasting stations for their role in disseminating messages on Covid-19 and has further encouraged the stations to continue playing the Covid-19 messages as these continue to play a major role in mitigating the spread of the pandemic,” stated Mapoma.