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This project examines the comparative study of the performances of government
owned and privately owned broadcasting media organization (A study of FRCN
and Raypower Radio stations Enugu). To achieve this, the survey method was
adopted as the research method while the instrument of data collection was the
questionnaire. The sample size was drawn using the stratified sampling technique.
Two hypothesis tested were accepted leading to the conclusion that the emergence
of private broadcasting media in Nigeria improves broadcasting generally and that
the entrance of private broadcasting is a challenge to government owned
broadcast media in Nigeria to a great extent. The researcher recommends among
others that private individuals should enter into broadcast media ownership in
order to further improve broadcasting in Nigeria especially in the rural areas
(rural broadcasting).
1.1 Background of he Study
The role of the broadcasters and the broadcast media as agents of rural and
national development, especially at the information dissemination level is now
generally recognized and accepted by experts and policy makers. What seems
quite unresolved in many developing countries is how best to utilize the potentials
of the broadcasters and their media to achieve developmental objectives (Nwosu,
1990:119). In Nigeria, there are three main types of media ownership namely;
government ownership, private ownership and partnership. In the case of
government ownership, the government establishes controls and finances the
media outfit, private ownership is when an individual or a group of persons
establish, control and finance the media outfit in partnership both the government
and private individuals are into some sort of co-ownership regarding the
establishment, financing and controlling of the media house.
There is a symbiotic relationship between the media and the society. It is
in the interest of the society to have strong and robust mass media as it is in the
best interest of the media to uphold the values and protect the interest of the
society from which they derive their impulse, support and patronage. No media
institution can survive if it is perceived to be working against its own society
(Onukaba 2005:3).
It is the duty of any media institution to keep the public aware of what is
going on around them by providing accurate, factual and timely information at all
times. It is also the duty of the media to warn and alert the public about
impending dangers to interpret events or provide information needed by the
public to make every day decision that will make them participate actively in the
political, economic and social activities of a community and to assist the public in
determining current trends.
Media institutions are also expected to use their products to educate,
entertain, modify public opinions, reinforce attitudes and set agenda for the
society. In many societies, people depend on the media to know where to find
jobs, where to shop, where to eat, seat out, who to note for etc it is therefore, safe
to say that the influence of the media extends to every aspect of human life and
But for media institutions to be able to play these roles effectively, they
are expected to uphold the values of objectivity, fairness, justice, accuracy,
balance, moderation and decency. The reason governments have often given for
their involvement in the media is that the private ones cannot be trusted to
faithfully uphold these values of the profession. They accuse them of fostering
unrealistic expectations among the populace, heightening anxieties about
conditions in the country, mongering etc. of course, these are general criticisms
against all media institutions, whether private or public. State media institutions
are set up ostensibly to address these weaknesses of the private media as well as
to bring government programmes and policies closer to the people and promote
peaceful co- existence among the different groups in the society in which they
operate. But they are usually limited by their methods of operation (Onukaba,
The “battle cone” seems to be drawn between those who argue
unflinchingly that the best way to use the broadcast as a facilitator of development
in the third world is to have them owned and controlled by the government and
those that believe that the best result will be achieved by making the electronic
media dominantly a private sector affair. It is on this fact that the researcher’s
topic finds it footing, hence “the comparative study of the performance of
government owned and privately owned broadcasting media organization” (a
study of FRCN and Ray Power Radio).
Somewhere between the two extreme rolls are those who belong to what
seems to be more pragmatic position that government ownership and control of
the media should co –exist with private media ownership and that commercial
broadcasting should exist with private media to facilitate the job of broadcasters
in the area of socio- economic development of their nations.
The origin of the current government ownership and control of the
broadcast media in Nigeria can be traced to the history, purpose and nature of
colonial broadcasting services. It was mainly used for catering for the information
and entertainment needs of the predominantly colonial political and educated
elites in colonial Nigeria as well as the needs of the very few Nigerians educated
elites (Nwosu 1990: 120-121)
Nigeria has since had its independence in 1960 and has undergone many
changes that make it imperative that the broadcast media should change its
operations and structure to reflect the change situations. Although, the
broadcasting system of Nigeria has changed or broaden its aims, objectives and
mode of operation but the ownership and control structures or pattern still remains
the same.
So many reasons have been given by many Nigerian experts and policy
makers for the perpetuation of the ownership and control status quo. One of such
reasons is that the airwaves are limited and should, therefore, be regulated by the
government to ensure equity, order and fairness it has also been argued that the
role of broadcasting as an instrument of nation- building and development is so
important that it should not be left in the hands of private individuals or
The fear has also been expressed that because radio and television are
powerful instruments of politicization, they careful into the hands of some
unscrupulous politicians or political groups who may misuse them to gain and
hold political power unfairly or propagate parochial political ideologies or ideas.
There is the question of funding proponents of government control and ownership
insist that broadcasting in Nigeria can never survive financially if it does not
depend on its government for financial subventions.
It is believed in many quarters that it is the above reason given for
exclusive government ownership and control broadcasting in Nigeria that has kept
the system unchanged until 1992. Hence, many Nigerians have yielded abundant
reasons in support of privatization of broadcasting.
The dominant belief of those who advocate privatization of broadcasting
in Nigeria seem to be that the electronic media practitioners would render the best
service when those media are operated as privately owned business or a
commercial enterprise. Among the reason given for making this conclusion is that
the electronic media would then be able to avoid unsuitable government influence
that content of broadcast news or current affairs in today’s Nigeria tend to be
politically biased.
The point that some people make is that private ownership of broadcast
media allows for healthy competition which could lead to improved services to
the masses of Nigeria. Related to this service of the masses is the argument that
privately owned broadcast media encourages diversity in production,
programming and other areas of broadcasting.
By 1992, there was a lot of debate and protest against the monopoly of the
government in broadcasting business. Thus, there were clarion calls for
deregulation and decentralization of broadcast media establishment and
ownership. Hence, it was the contention of the people that a media system that
does not suffer undue restrictions and interference from government would
definitely become the best for the development democracy in the country (Nwosu
It was not until 24th of august 1992 that the federal military government
under Babangida’s administration promulgated decrees number 38, which
established privatization of electronic media. It was in view of this that Dr.
Raymond Dopkesi; established Raypower which started broadcasting in Lagos
and later established Enugu station which is one of my study focus.
It is the development that gave rise to the contention as to which system of
ownership is preferable, hence, the relevance of the study at hand.
1.2 Statement of Research Problem
Ownership of the media house, its control and recruitment of its principal
staff has formed the influential factors consequent upon the programme quality of
the media house since the owners of the media house usually determine the
aforementioned factor. The media ownership has in some ways influenced the
media progrmames and this has posed problems to journalism as a trade.
In this case, the broadcast media have to function in tune with the whims
and caprices of the owner(s). Nothing runs the broadcast media practitioners
down as having the option of either following the dictates of he owners or face the
bitter music of being sacked. Ownership influence on programme content has
made many broadcasting media outfit to collapse in operations and has also made
them to loose their audience grip. This is mostly true of government owned
broadcast media. After the liberation of media started springing up from all
corners, one of which is Ray power FM radio station.
These new privately owned media station produced standard programmes
that out bids that of the government owned media stations and as such, many
people abandoned government owned broadcast media.
1.3 Objectives of the Study
The objective of this study will include:
i To find out if the emergence of private broadcasting media in Nigeria has
improved broadcasting generally.
ii. To establish if the entrance of private broadcasting is a challenge to
government owned broadcast media in Nigeria.
iii. To know if source credibility affects broadcast media listenership.
iv. To find out if Enugu radio listenership prefers private radio programmes
to government radio programmes.
v. To check whether the radio listenership use what they hear from the radio.
1.4 Research Questions
i. How does the emergence of private broadcasting media in Nigeria
improve broadcasting generally?
ii. To what extent is the entrance of private broadcasting a challenge to
government owned broadcast media in Nigeria?
iii. How does source credibility affect broadcast media listenership?
iv. To what extent does the Enugu Radio listenership prefer private radio v.
programmes to government radio programmes?
v. To what extent does the radio listenership use what they hear from radio?
1.5 Research Hypotheses
The following research hypothesis derives logically from the problem
posed in the research questions.
Hi: The emergence of private broadcasting in Nigeria improves broadcasting
Ho: The emergence of private broadcasting in Nigeria does not improve
broadcasting generally.
Hi: The entrance of private broadcasting is a challenge to government owned
broadcast media in Nigeria to a great extent
Ho: The entrance of private broadcasting is not a challenge to government
owned broadcast media in Nigeria to a great extent
1.6 Significance of the Study
The findings of this study “The comparative study of the performances of
government owned and privately owned broadcasting media organization” (A
study of FRCN and Raypower Radio station Enugu) will help other researcher in
carrying out a similar study. It will add to the mass communication literature and
bulk of knowledge on media performance in Nigeria. The study will help to
analyze the pattern of media ownership and its influence on Nigerian
development. Finally, it will provide the premise for individuals and stakeholders
to make decisions on which form of media ownership is better and needful in
1.7 Scope of the Study
The researcher’s scope will center on comparatively studying government
ownership of media alongside privately owned media. The study focus will be on
FRCN and Ray power radio stations both in Enugu.
The population
The population selected is made up of the entire people who listens to
FRCN and Ray power radio stations.
The sample
The sample size will be on those in Enugu metropolis. Due to time and
financial constraints and because the researcher is convinced that since FRCN and
Raypower FM are both situated in Enugu, it will offer a good sample for the
1.8 Operational Definition of Terms
Comparative study:- Based on the study, it means that the researcher will study
two media houses government owned (FRCN) and privately owned (Raypower)
to find out how similar or different they are.
Government owned media organization:- This is represented by Federal Radio
Co-operation of Nigeria (FRCN) which is part of the researcher’s study focus. It
is owned by the federal government of Nigeria.
Privately owned broadcasting media:- It is represented by Raypower FM,
which is also part of the researcher’s study focus. It is owned by Raymond
Dopkesi, under the corporate name: DAAR Communications.


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