South Sudan’s government on Tuesday shut down the BBC relay stations in Juba and Wau towns, citing failure to comply with a new agreement.
Media outlets in the world’s youngest nation have increasingly come under tight control from the relevant regulators since last two years.
A top official of the South Sudan Broadcasting Corporation (SSBC) said the decision to close the relay stations of BBC radio in the country was administrative.
Magok Chilim, director of the South Sudan Broadcasting Corporation, said the BBC had signed a previous agreement with the former ministry of information in November 2008 subject to renewal.
“By coming in of the concerned bodies such as SSBC, Media Authority, Access to Information and NCA. Honorable Minister of Information, Honorable Michael Makuei wrote to BBC in 2016 that the agreement shall not be renewed again until BBC comes for a new agreement and pays first, but they ignored it,” Magok said.
“On 22 January, 2018, Honorable Minister wrote to them cancelling the agreement and informed BBC to pay SSBC all the arrears and come to negotiate the new agreement with SSBC, Media Authority, and NCA… after a month they started giving conditions,” he explained.
The official said the public broadcaster had given a warning to the BBC office to comply with the new agreement last month.
Magok threatened to sue the British Broadcasting Corporation in the event of failure to pay its arrears.