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Reps doubt GOtv license, to engage NBC over pay-per view scheme

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Indications have emerged that the clamour by Nigerians on pay TV operators to switch to pay-per-view instead of monthly subscription is still trending as the House of Representatives yesterday mandated its Committee on Information, National Orientation, Ethics and Values to investigate the license status of GOTV in the provision of Digital Terrestrial Television Services in Nigeria. The committee was given eight weeks to carry out the investigation and report back to the House for further legislative action.

The Committee will among others, engage the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) to enforce the pay-per view scheme on the digital television broadcasting service providers for the benefit of Nigerians.

The resolutions followed the adoption of a motion titled “Call for Investigation of the License Status of GOTV in the Provision of Digital Terrestrial Television Services in Nigeria’’, sponsored by Rep. Jones Onyeriri (PDP-Imo).

According to the lawmaker, GOTV does not possess the licence to provide digital terrestrial television services in Nigeria, pointing out that it was only a company known as Details Nigeria Limited obtained a Digital Mobile TV (DSTV MOBILE) for 10 Nigerian cities in 2007.

“However, the licence granted to Details Nigeria Limited was converted by GOTV to provide digital terrestrial television through a high-tech manoeuvre without due process and in violation of the provisions of the law

He based his argument on the regulatory provision which empowers the National Broadcasting Commission to regulate the operations of Radio and Television stations, including Cable Television Services, direct broadcasting and any other medium of broadcasting in Nigeria.

Onyeriri said “Section 2 (1) (g) of the Act empowers the Commission to receive processes and consider applications for the establishment, ownership or operations of radio and television stations in Nigeria. “The section of the Act specifically empowers the Commission to control and regulate the operations as well as upholding the principles of equity and fairness in the broadcasting industry.

“In violation of the Act, GOTV, a subsidiary of MultiChoice Nigeria, started operations of Digital Terrestrial Television Broadcasting in April 2012 at Ibadan, Port Harcourt and Lagos without passing through the due process of bidding for the private signal distribution.

“Nigerians are made to pay for what they do not consume through the monthly subscription scheme presently obtainable in the service charges of major Digital Television Broadcasting service providers like DSTV, Star times and GOTV.

“This is as against the pay per view scheme obtainable in other countries like USA, UK, Brazil, France, and even South Africa,” Onyeriri said.


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