South Sudan shuts BBC stations 'over unpaid bill'

Staff and visitors walk outside the headquarters of the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) in central London on July 19, 2017. BBC said it regretted SSBC’s decision. PHOTO | DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS | AFP

The authorities in South Sudan have shut down the BBC’s FM relay stations in the capital, Juba, and in Wau.

A top South Sudan Broadcasting Corporation (SSBC) official, Magok Chilim, said the BBC had ignored requests to “pay arrears”, despite a reminder in January.

He threatened to sue the BBC should the broadcaster not pay its bill.

In a statement, the BBC said it regretted SSBC’s decision to stop broadcasting "its news services to an audience of more than 400,000 in South Sudan”.

The corporation was working hard to reach an accommodation with SSBC to restore the service, it added.