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National Film Authority Orders Television Stations to Seek Clearance for Film Broadcast

The directive follows multiple complaints received about the unauthorised broadcasting of films by media houses and digital television channels. 

The National Film Authority(NFA) has issued a directive to all media houses and television channels in Ghana, requiring them to obtain consent from copyright owners before airing films on their channels.

A statement dated Wednesday, June 19, 2024, and signed by the Chief Executive Officer of the National Film Authority (NFA), Juliet Yaa Asantewaa Asante said the directive follows multiple complaints received about the unauthorised broadcasting of films by media houses and digital television channels. 

The gravamen of the complaints include:

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 (1) A number of terrestrial channel owners and media houses in Ghana broadcast/air movies or films on their channels.

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(2) The broadcasting/airing of these movies or films are being done without the authorisation from the movie creators/copyright owners.

(3) The unauthorised broadcasting/airing of the said movies or films is in violation of exclusive rights of the copyright owners.

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The directive it said is in accordance with the authority’s statutory function of ensuring compliance with laws regulating copyright within the Ghanaian film industry as set out in section 3(e)(iv) of the Development and Classification of Film Act 2016 (Act 935).

The statement cautiously urges terrestrial channel owners and media houses to conduct a thorough assessment of the films aired on their channels, ensuring that the necessary authorizations have been obtained from the copyright owners.

“If any channel or media house is found to be broadcasting a movie or film without the requisite authorisation, they must immediately cease and desist from broadcasting until the necessary authorization is obtained,”  the statement read.

According to the NFA, broadcasting films or shows without seeking permission violates the films’ exclusive rights, constituting both civil and criminal liabilities.

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