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DSO: NBC, Plateau govt sensitise users of Set Top Boxes on Access Fee after 1 year

As one year free access to digital terrestrial TV watching spree ends on April 30 in Plateau State following the launch of Digital Switch Over (DSO) by April last year, users have been encouraged by the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) and Plateau State government to quickly renew their Set Top Boxes (STBs) by paying access fee to avoid blackout by month end.

Commissioner of Information in the State, Alhaji Nazif Mohammed has already made it clear that families and offices using STBs freely given to them during the pilot switch-over that they risk blackout after April 30, because the one year free access is ending month end.

Business Hilights recalls that about 420,000 STBs were given out to the public for free use that would last one year, at the onset of the switch-over on April 30, 2016.

The Commissioner said in Jos that interested users must pay N1,500 access fee or face blackout at the expiration of the one year free service.

“The set top boxes can only work free of charge for one year after which an access fee of N1,500 per year should be paid,” he said.

According to him, the state government provided 200,000 set top boxes free of charge to the people of Plateau, while other people bought the boxes from distributors at a subsidised fee.

Mohammed averred that “The idea was to give free television services to those who have received or bought the boxes for one year. It is almost one year now and we want to inform the general public that by the end of this month, 129 boxes will have total blackout unless they are recharged.

“Such blackout will continue till November 2017 when all free set top boxes will be deactivated if their owners did not pay the access fee.

“Government wishes to alert the general public that when they experience blackout, it won’t be because the set top boxes or television sets are bad; it will be because they have not recharged by paying access fee,” the Commissioner said.

Already, as part of the drive to ease the payment for the access fee, government is already working out detailed information on how and where to recharge, as distributors were still working on the processes of recharging.

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