Tag Archives: Digital switchover

Government to resume DSO roll-out

Nigeria’s federal government has revealed that it will soon resume digital switchover (DSO) across the country.

Lai Mohammed
Minister of information and culture Lai Mohammed made the announcement at a ceremony during the unveiling of the new amendment to the sixth edition of the broadcasting code.

He said DSO was put on hold after it was launched in six states and reiterated the commitment of the government to spreading the benefits of digital television to the people, stressing that it was the fastest way to create jobs.

He assured stakeholders they would hear from the government on the resumption of the DSO roll-out in the coming weeks.

“The government had been implementing policies and programmes to reposition the creative industry and one of the major recommendations of the post Covid-19 initiative committee on the creative industry chaired by ace comedian Ali Baba was a restructuring of the industry,” said the minister.

He said the government would soon set up a committee looking at the implementation of the recommendations to move the industry forward. He also reiterated its commitment to assisting the Newspaper Proprietors Association of Nigeria in securing the N10bn Nigeria Media Intervention Fund from the Central Bank of Nigeria.

The roll-out of DSO began in Jos, Plateau in April 2016 and moved to Abuja, Ilorin, Kaduna and Enugu in Oshogbo in February 2018 and Benin City in 2019.

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DSO offers 30 new channels

Over the Christmas season, 30 or more local and national TV channels were made available on Nigeria’s FreeTV platform, thanks to digital switchover (DSO).

Lucky Omoluwa

The extra digital bandwidth made available by DSO has meant more television channels can be offered to homes with the right digital TV equipment.

Lucky Omoluwa, chairman of Nigerian tech firm Pinnacle Communications, said Nigeria’s population is now “more informed about the country’s events and issues” since DSO has been implemented in the country.

According to Omoluwa, the switch from analogue broadcasts in Nigeria has immense benefits on its citizens and the country as a whole. His comments were made as part of his annual Christmas announcement.

Pinnacle is reportedly the only private licensed national signals distributor as part of the DSO Nigeria programme.

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Enugu, Osun to flip digital switch

Nigeria’s digital switchover (DSO) is set to reach Enugu and Osun states this month.

Mallam Is’haq Modibbo-Kawu

The news, which comes weeks after Kwara and Kaduna states made the switchover, was announced at a DSO stakeholders held in Uyo, Akwa Ibom, by Mallam Is’haq Modibbo-Kawu, director general of the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC).

Modibbo-Kawu also disclosed that DSO would reach Delta and Gombe states during the first quarter of 2018, and promised that 12 further states would make the transition before the year ends.

Of the challenges posed by DSO, he added: “Coverage is related to topography. Take, as an example, the Federal Capital Territory – it is a city of hills and undulating ground.

“As I am talking to you, the signal distributor for Abuja has purchased feeder pillar transmitters, which will be installed for the entire Abuja and environs to be covered. The same thing applies in Plateau. The signal distributor has to put feeder pillar transmitters in places like Langtang for the entire state to be covered.”

The DSO meeting also saw speakers proffer solutions for such challenges. Olusegun Odebunmi, chairman of the House Committee on Information, National Orientation & Values, addressed the issue of lack of funds.

“The government must give directives for the sale of spectrum and make part of the realised money available to bankroll the process,” Odebunmi said. “The best and the only sure way to raise money is to sell off the nation’s spectrum. The process requires huge investment and, because it is Nigerians that will benefit from it, it is time for government to invest in its people.

“There should also be a plan for compensation for those people who are vacating the spectrum. Money from the spectrum will also be used to subsidise the purchase of set-top boxes for the masses. The government must have the political will to drive the process.”

The NBC has asked states that have made the switchover to consider subsidising set-top boxes for indigenes and old people. So far, DSO has reached Abuja, Jos, Kwara and Kaduna states.

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