Classification of film act contravenes a supreme court ruling – GIBA president points out

Classification of film act contravenes a supreme court ruling – GIBA president points out

Andrew Danso Ahinkora, president of the Ghana Independent Broadcasters Association (GIBA) has said his outfit does not agree with some aspects of new law on the classification of audio-visual contents for television stations stating that it was in contravention with an earlier ruling by the Supreme Court of Ghana.

His view on new law seeking to be implemented by the National Film Authority from 1st May 2021 was expressed on Accra based TV3 and monitored by myactiveonline.com

 The National Film Authority wants to implement a film classification act from 1st May 2021. According to the act “no television station, cinema theater or movie screening centre shall show any unclassified audiovisual content.”

According to the statement issued and signed by Chairman of the Film Classification Committee, Socrates Safo on Wednesday April 7, “A right owner, licensee or assignee who desires to exhibit an audiovisual content shall submit the content to the film classification committee for examination and classification at least twenty-one days before the intended exhibition.”

Film Classification Committee statement on the implementation of Act 935
Film Classification Committee statement on the implementation of Act 935

“As it is stated in the Development and Classification of Film Act 935, all audiovisual content shall be previewed and classified before exhibition. After several consultations with various stakeholders of the audiovisual industry in Ghana, the general public is hereby expected to note the following; From 1st May 2021, no television station, cinema theater or movie screening centre shall show any unclassified audiovisual content.”

However, Mr Ahinkora stated that, “if we operate by the law that they are seeking to implement, it is in contravention of the ruling of the supreme court on a similar law that was put in place, known as the LI 2224, in which the supreme court has made clear pronouncement that certain aspects of the constitution cannot be breached. In fact the constitution cannot be breached at all and we feel certain aspects of the law is in contravention of the constitution. Therefore we need to draw attention to it and we need to sort them out before it is implemented.”

“I don’t think it is in the interest of anybody for any part of the law to be implemented and some part of the law suspended. The law is the law, and if it is Act 935 they are working with, it is the totality of Act 935 they are working with. If there are grey areas, they need to work them out before they start implementing Act 935,” he added.

By: Stella Annan | myactiveonline.com Twitter @activetvgh

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