The newly appointed Director General of the Nigerian Broadcasting Commission (NBC), Emeka Mba, has said that owners of analogue televisions in Nigeria will by June 2015 have to purchase a set top box to enable them receive television signals.
This is due to the deadline for the nation’s broadcast stations to switch over to digital transmission by June 2015.
According to him, the digitisation of television will allow more room for spectrum expansion for the nation’s broadband and internet penetration.
Mr Mba was speaking as a guest on Channels TV breakfast programme, Sunrise daily, where he revealed that there are already about two million digital televisions in Nigeria and these would not need the set top boxes.
Affirming that the right to information is a human right, the newly appointed NBC boss explained that the set top boxes will enable owners of analogue television watch digital transmission and that it will be subsidised by the federal government as it is done globally.
He further revealed that some new companies will be licensed to be ‘Signal Distributors’ of transmissions coming from the television stations in the Country.
There will soon be a bidding process for the potential signal distributors he adds.
Mr Mba denied that a new national signal distributor has been licensed, explaining that the role of StarTimes with the Nigerian Television Authority (NTA) is a test run as dictated by the ITU that national broadcasters should lead the digitisation.
He also explained that in the next two months, the commission will launch a test-run of the digitization in phases.