Temple of Justice
Court Closes Love FM, TV, LIB 24 Radio
MONROVIA, August 15 (LINA) - The Civil Law Court at the Temple of Justice has closed the Sarafina Ventures and Communications Incorporated, the operators of Love FM 105.1, Love TV Channel 7 and LIB 24 Radio operated by LIB 24 Incorporated.
The decision by the Court was reached following a Petition for Preliminary Injunction growing out of a Petition for Declaratory Judgment filed by the Liberia Telecommunications Authority (LTA) through the Ministry of Justice recently.
A release issued by the Ministry of Information, Cultural Affairs and Tourism on Monday said the closure of the station is predicated upon the fact that Sarafina Ventures and Communication Inc. has not regularized its status nor paid its license and other fees for over five years in keeping with relevant provisions of the Telecommunications Licensing Authorization Regulations.
LTA regulations require that any use of radio frequencies must be in accordance with a valid radio spectrum license or radio frequency authorization.
The release said Sarafina Ventures and Communications Incorporated unilaterally and without prior written consent of the LTA, transferred the frequency 105.1 to another corporation, LIB-24 Incorporated which operated LIB 24 Radio prior to the closure.
It says that the unilateral transfer of the frequency without the expressed consent of the LTA is in violation of Part VI, Section 15(1) and Section 20 of the LTA Regulations 0001(2008), which provides that “any Licensee wishing to transfer ownership or control of the License shall apply to the LTA in writing at least 90 days prior to the proposed date of transfer, or such other period as may be determined by the LTA.”
The release said that Government regrets that in the wake of the democratic atmosphere with media pluralism and freedom, a media institution like the Sarafina Ventures and Communication Incorporated will woefully engage in circumventing the established rules and procedures governing the communications sector, and defrauding the government of more than US$50,000 in unpaid fees.