The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, has assured that Nigeria will leave no stone unturned in its quest to achieve a successful Digital TV Switch Over that will yield technological dividends far beyond imagination.
The Minister gave the assurance in London on Thursday, at the end of his two-day interactions with key players in the successful UK Digital TV programme, including the country’s Communication Regulator Ofcom, which created the regulatory structures that enabled the Digital TV Switch Over.
The Minister, who also met officials of leading public service broadcaster BBC to understand its central role in supporting the development of Digital TV in the UK, said all concerned would work relentlessly to meet the June 2017 deadline for Digital Switch Over (DSO) in Nigeria.
“The Digital Switch Over in the UK spanned about five years (2008 to 2012). Nigeria has a much shorter time to achieve the same feat. But we will harness all the available expertise to ensure a ‘ successful and history-making switch over,” Alhaji Mohammed said.
The Minister also visited Digital UK and Freeview to draw lessons from the UK’s Digital Switch Over programme and to learn about the development of Freeview and the factors which have contributed to its long-running success as the Digital Terrestrial TV service that serves 75% of UK homes.
He rounded off his meetings with officials of the UK’s sole signal distributor Arqiva to understand how the UK’s TV infrastructure was developed and operated, learn about Arqiva’s role in Digital TV Switch Over programme, and how it completed the conversion of its TV network from analogue to digital in the years 2008 to 2012.
Under a two-day intensive programme that ended on Thursday, the Minister led to the meetings a delegation that included the Director-General of the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC), Mr. Is’haq Modibbo Kawu, and other officials of the Commission; the Director-General of the Federal Radio Corporation of Nigeria (FRCN), Mr. Mansur Liman, and officials of the Content Aggregator CCNL.