President Muhammadu Buhari on Thursday disclosed that the country is committed to meeting June 2017 deadline set by World International Telecommunication Union Council, for transition from analogue to digital television broadcasting.
The president made the commitment at official launch and roll out of Digital Switch Over (DSO) spearheaded by Ministry of Information and Culture and National Broadcasting Commission (NBC).
Buhari represented by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, said with DSO, the country stands at threshold of exciting time for free TV channels, jobs creation, entertainment and commerce.
He stressed that digitisation would create jobs in area of contents, software development and production of Set Top Boxes.
The President added that digitisation would provide platform for film producers and musicians to release their production directly to platform that would substantially curb piracy.
“As the doors open for digital transmission, what is important is that it will liberalise access to and increase the versatility of media information.
“Interactive programming, mobile reception of videos, internet and multimedia base advertising, educative programmes sales and marketing are obvious low hanging fruits,’’ he said.
The President assured that the DSO rollout would continue in the states until the entire country is covered.
On his part, minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed said there are number of initiatives been focused on in order to achieve a credible and effective development of TV and production industries.
He said “There are a number of initiatives that we are focusing on in order to achieve a credible and effective development of our TV and Production industries and to successfully develop the digital economy
“Our digital environment will give equal opportunity to everyone to be rewarded for investment in creativity, and that is what the regime of forensic Audience Measurement, which Digitisation offers, will afford.”
“If it is your program people are watching, you will be the recipient of higher revenues because the advertisers will run to you.
Mohammed opined that government would forbid all forms of monopoly so that Nigerians can get access to all types of content without having to expend money on multiple devices.
“We are going to forbid all forms of monopoly so that all Nigerians can get access to all types of content without having to expend money on multiple devices.
“With the Set-top box you are getting your Free-to-Air channels, you must be allowed to pay for and buy any and every channel allowed to be broadcast in the country.
“We have watched our beloved Nollywood move from VHS tapes to VCD, to DVD and whereas the whole world has moved to digital consumption of content with its attendant benefits and democratisation of distribution, we have been constrained by limited penetration of Internet in our homes.” The minister said.
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