The digital switchover (DSO) has launched in Kano state after an official event at the Coronation Hall in the state’s Government House.
Edward Idris Amana, chairman of Digiteam, a group of stakeholders set up by the Nigerian government to coordinate the country’s migration from analogue to digital, said the move was another milestone in Nigeria’s journey to full digitisation.
“This journey started in Jos in April 2016 with the launch of the pilot scheme. This was quickly followed with successes in Abuja, Enugu, Kaduna, Ilorin, Osogbo, Lagos and now in Kano,” he said.
Amana added that the next point of call would be Port Harcourt, confirming that plans had reached an advanced stage to make sure the launch in Port Harcourt is a success.
“All the successes achieved so far couldn’t have been possible without the untiring efforts and leadership of the honourable minister of information, Lai Mohammed, together with his team, members of the Digiteam, ministerial task force and others,” he said.
John Ugbe, CEO of pay TV company MultiChoice and chairman of the Broadcasting Organisations of Nigeria, commended regulator the NBC for the switch from analogue to digital, adding that he had no doubt the NBC has dedicated staff who have the capability to achieve a successful switchover.
Mohammed said the DSO is aimed at creating a more equitable, just and people-centred information society that will connect underserved populations and remote communities, thereby bridging the digital divide. “The federal government is vigorously implementing a nationwide process of transitioning from analogue to digital TV broadcasting,” he said.
Looking back at efforts made so far with the launch in Lagos, Jos and other states, the minister added: “The journey may have been slow but it has been steady and we will keep it so.”
He added that with DSO, there will be improved picture and graphics, enhanced information services, improved digital services in remote areas, availability of over 60 digital channels, movies, and the transmission of free TV, which is readily available throughout the country.
The federal government is promoting DSO because it is critical to the prosperity of the creative industry, the minister added.