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Main opposition heads to the courts to challenge the new fees for broadcast licences

shot0003The APNU is looking at legal advice to challenge the Guyana Broadcasting Authority announced broadcasting licensing fee of 2.5 million dollars and the functions of the authority.

At a press briefing today APNU executive member Anthony Vieira said that the Broadcasting Bill in its present form violates the constitution in two areas; freedom of Speech and equality under the law. The former television pioneer pointed to what he described as small markets competing with larger markets and paying the same fee.

Broadcasters are now liable to pay a fee of three percent of their gross revenue. Vieira feels that an autonomous and independent body is needed to run the Broadcasting Authority.

Head of the GBA Bibi Shadick, revealed that Cabinet had approved a guideline that will determine the fee of each broadcaster.

Member of Parliament Joseph Harmon is urging broadcasters to meet with the GBA to arrive at a position that is reasonable and make adjustments to the figure.

The revelation of license distribution by former President, Bharrat Jagdeo, to some of his friends and close associates, sparked widespread protest by other private media companies and civil society.

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