Broadcasting Regulations

Broadcasting (Fees) Regulations



(section 23)


(29th October, 2004)








   1.   Citation


   2.   Interpretation


   3.   Ownership


   4.   Commencement of broadcasting service


   5.   Fairness in advertising


   6.   Scheduling of advertisements


   7.   Sponsorship of programmes


   8.   Infomercials


   9.   Harmful interference


   10.   Local content


   11.   Broadcasting standards


   12.   Protection of children


   13.   Accurate, fair and impartial reporting


   14.   Broadcast of unconfirmed reports


   15.   Correction of errors in broadcast


   16.   Reporting on controversial issues


   17.   Conduct of interviews




   19.   Invasion of privacy


   20.   Consent to broadcast


   21.   Sexual offences


   22.   Payment of criminals


   23.   Public notices of emergencies or public disaster announcements


   24.   Special event broadcast licence


   25.   External satellite feed


   26.   Broadcasts conducted without Board's authority


   27.   Amendment of licence conditions by Board


   28.   Amendment of licence conditions at request of licensee


   29.   Restrictions on dealing with foreign governments


   30.   Cable broadcasting


   31.   Community broadcasting


   32.   Commercial broadcasting


   33.   Public broadcasting


   34.   Complaints


   35.   Dispute resolution


   36.   General penalty



S.I. 97, 2004,
S.I. 21, 2010.


1.   Citation

   These Regulations may be cited as the Broadcasting Regulations.


2.   Interpretation

   In these Regulations, unless the context otherwise requires-

   "advertising" means the broadcasting of any item in return for payment or other valuable consideration to a broadcaster with the intention of-


   (a)   selling to a viewer or listener, any product or service;


   (b)   convincing a viewer or listener of a belief or course of action; or


   (c)   promoting a product, service, belief, course of action, person or organisation;

   "assigned frequency" means the center of the frequency band assigned to a broadcasting service;

   "Board" means the National Broadcasting Board established by section 3 of the Act;

   "broadcaster" means any person who composes or distributes television or radio programme services for reception by subscribers to such services or members of the public;

   "broadcasting licence" means a licence granted to a person and issued by the Board, for the purpose of providing a broadcasting service;

   "cable owner" means a person who owns or operates a cable network;

   "children" means persons who are below the age of 18 years;

   "commencement date" means the date on which a licensee commences the operation of a broadcasting service;

   "commercial broadcasting" means a broadcasting service which is operated for a profit, or which forms part of a profit-making entity;

   "coverage area" means the territory covered by a broadcasting station signal strength, allowing for clear reception, and includes an area specified in a broadcasting licence by the Board;

   "disaster" includes any event or circumstance arising out of accidents, natural phenomena, fires, floods, explosions, or incidents involving exposure or potential exposure to radioactive or toxic materials;

   "frequency band" means that part of the electromagnetic radio frequency spectrum which is allocated for the use of broadcasting services by the International Telecommunications Union, in so far as such allocation has been agreed to by the Government of Botswana;

   "harmful interference" means any interference which endangers the functioning of a radio communications service, or which seriously degrades, obstructs or repeatedly interrupts such a service;

   "infomercial" means any advertising broadcast in visual or audio form, lasting for more than two minutes, which may contain demonstrations of the use of the product or service advertised, entailing direct offers to the public in return for payment, and which results in the broadcaster receiving payment in monetary terms or otherwise;

   "local content" means the total of all television or radio programmes that have been produced using material gathered in Botswana, and which mostly use Batswana personnel and services in Botswana;

   "local market" means the area in which a licensee is licensed to operate;

   "national emergency organisations" include the police force, security forces, fire brigade, ambulance services, medical services, veterinarian services and environmental disaster agencies, whether or not such organisations are owned and managed on a private or public basis;

   "performance period" means the period between 6.00 a.m. and 12 midnight each day;

   "political party" means a party which is either registered or recognised as being legally exempt from the requirement of registration as a political party in Botswana;

   "programme", in relation to a broadcasting service, means visual information or sounds, or a combination of visual information and sounds, which inform, enlighten or entertain members of the public, and includes advertising or sponsorship material, whether of a commercial nature or not;

   "public notice of emergency service" means any service provided by the licensee alone, or in conjunction with any other person, by means of which emergency broadcasts are made free of charge by national emergency organisations;

   "radio licence" means a licence issued in terms of section 42 of the Telecommunications Act, to construct, operate and maintain a radio communications system;

   "satellite broadcasting service" means a broadcasting service which is broadcast by transmitters situated on a satellite;

   "signal" includes any signs, sounds, text, images, information or data of any configuration sent, or to be sent, for conveyance by a licensed system;

   "special event broadcast licence" means a broadcasting licence issued for an event that does not last for more than 7 days and which is broadcast-


   (a)   outside a licensee's coverage area; or


   (b)   in partnership with a foreign broadcaster;

   "sponsored programme" means a programme that has all or part of its costs paid by a sponsor, with a view to promoting that sponsor's, or another sponsor's name, product or service;

   "station format" means an arrangement of programmes which are presented on a broadcasting station;

   "subscriber" means a person who has entered into an agreement with a cable owner in relation to the reception of cable television broadcasts;

   "telecommunications" means any system of conveying signals, sounds, communications or other information through the agency of electric, magnetic, electro-magnetic, electro-chemical or electro-mechanical energy, or through the agency of radio waves;

   "terrestrial broadcasts" means the services that are broadcast from a transmitter situated upon the earth's surface within the country; and

   "territory" means the geographical area of Botswana.


3.   Ownership

   A person shall not own a television station and a radio station that serve the same local market.


4.   Commencement of broadcasting service

   (1) A licensee shall publish a notice in a newspaper, published and circulated in the licensee's local market, not later than seven days before commencing to transmit a broadcasting service from a broadcasting station.

   (2) A notice under subregulation (1) shall contain-


   (a)   a statement about the licensee's intention to transmit a broadcasting service from a station in the licensee's local market;


   (b)   the commencement date and time of transmissions;


   (c)   the assigned frequency that the station will use;


   (d)   the station format;


   (e)   a statement that members of the public should contact the licensee if any transmission by the licensee causes interference with the services provided by other licensees; and


   (f)   the address and telephone number of the licensee.

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