Mallam Is’haq Modibbo Kawu, Director General of the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) announced that the switch off of analogue signal will be done when 95 percent of Nigerian will have access to Free Digital Television content.
Commenting the DSO initiatives, Modibbo Kawu declared: “All Nigerians are entitled to access to information, irrespective of class, creed or location. The new technology of digital broadcasting is already enhancing access in a revolutionary manner. That will soon become a nationwide experience for all Nigerians. We remain optimistic that by the end of the year, at least half of the country will have access to Free Digital Television content”.
With the due date of June 17, the director general believes that the countries of the ECOWAS would reassess the issue given the fact that no country made the transition during the time frame and said:”Let me re-emphasise that one of the fears about delayed DSO transition is the problem of trans-border signal interference from analogue transmitters. The good news is that our neighbouring countries have not achieved anything close to what Nigeria has been able to do so far. As a matter of fact, none of the countries in the ECOWAS sub-region has a DSO process that matches what we have achieved in Nigeria.”
The process remains a technical and financial problem, the director general of NBC committed to an importation of 850 000 Set Top Boxes (STB) from China which Nigeria could not pay at first but: “Thankfully, President Muhammadu Buhari, who had always been convinced of the importance of Nigeria’s DSO process, finally approved release of N10 billion to the NBC in September 2016.” commented Ishaq Kawu.
So far 745480 STBs have been brought to the country, 566 478 delivered and only 332 095 activated. This migration has been described as a learning process by The Director General of the NBC, he added: “The DSO process is also a learning experience for all of us driving it, and we have continued to enrich our experiences in a manner that can significantly benefit the process as we move forwards.”
Following the success of the migration in Abuja last year the NBC will process to digitalize on region after another the next on the list should be the llorin Kwara state.