In keeping with the spirit of regional rollout of Digital Switch Over (DSO) ahead of covering the nation over time, all is set for Enugu and environ to be switched on to the trending TV experience on Monday, February 12, by the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC).
This was revealed by the Director General of the Commission, Mallam Is’haq Modibbo Kawu at a press conference in Abuja on Thursday.
The Enugu DSO will be followed by Osun State billed to take place on 23rd of this month.
He recalled that the roll out of the DSO in two more states, namely Kaduna and Kwara at the end of 2017, brought the number of states now switched on to four.
While noting that NBC is committed to roll out in many more states this year, Kawu averred that “We have already scheduled Monday the 12th of February 2018 for the switch on for Enugu state. Similarly February 23rd has been affirmed for the switch on in Osun state. And as we speak, our second national signal distributor, Pinnacle Communications Limited, have moved to site in Delta state, and are also packed up for work in Gombe state”.
“We have also scheduled to switch on six more states, one each from the six geo-political regions, during this year, 2018. We envisage that by the end of the third quarter of 2018, we would have switched on in 12 states around Nigeria. We are steadily implementing this new digital broadcasting process,” NBC boss noted.
Continuing, he commended stakeholders in the implementation process for their resolve to work together towards a common good, stressing that “The new resolve has given the process the needed impetus”.
He recalled that during a recent retreat in Uyo, where the progress of the DSO was put on the table, “The industry took some major steps which we believe will further guarantee a seamless transition. Each player now understands more clearly, the roles they play in the DSO eco-system. We have also consciously delineated revenue streams for all players, an issue which was the basis for some of the rancor that existed before”.
“The broadcasters, signal distributors, content aggregator, Set top Box manufacturers are all on the same page now, to help strengthen the work of delivering the DSO. NBC has also informed the pay DTT operators, GOTV and NTA/STAR TIMES, to begin discussions with the two signal distributors, ITS and Pinnacle Communications. This is because, in line with the Government White Paper on the Transition from Analogue to Digital Broadcasting, after June 2019, these pay DTT operators would no longer be licensed to operate as both content providers and signal distributors.
“Similarly, we are going to also begin a phased Analogue Switch Off (ASO), in Plateau state and the FCT, by the end of the First Quarter of 2018. And as part of acceleration of the work, we have commenced the digital mapping of Nigeria. It is a process that would help to give clarity to the entire DSO process. At another level, NBC has submitted a long list of new radio and television stations to President Muhammad’s Buhari, for presidential assent.
NBC also thanked President Muhammadu Buhari for “always been encouraging the NBC to open up accesses for Nigerians to be able to register newer radio and television stations, because of his belief that they help to deepen democratic discourse, while also helping to create new jobs through the broadcasting value chain”.