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Monday, July 04, 2011

Digital Migration: Participants demand release of White paper

A two-day media workshop on digital broadcasting migration ended last week at the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja (FCTA), with participants demanding for the official release of the white paper submitted by the Presidential Advisory Council (PAC) on Digital Migration in Nigeria over 18 months ago.

The workshop, which held at the Digital Bridge Institute (DBI), Utako District, Abuja, saw participants arguing that the formal release of the white paper would enable the Nigerian public to know the contents, and for the media to x-ray the paper to spur immediate implementation by the federal government and private sector operators, especially in the broadcasting industry.

They noted that the commencement of the implementation process is crucial for charting the way forward for the country, mostly in fulfilling the global agenda for countries of the world to migrate to digital platform by 2015.

Also, participants at the forum mainly media practitioners lambasted the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) for not doing enough in leading the campaign for digital migration in the country.

“It is unfortunate that most people, especially media practitioners based in Abuja where NBC is based don’t know much about the issues around digital migration efforts by Nigeria,” one of the participants lamented.

The workshop witnessed presentation of papers on “digital transition: behind the issues; digital migration in Africa and globally; digital migration in Nigeria; challenges of reporting digital migration in Nigeria; Research report on Nigeria Digital Migration,” among others.

The coordinator of the event of the Nigeria Digital Migration workshop, Mr. Emmanuel Edet disclosed the workshop was organized by the Association for Progressive Communication in collaboration with London-based online news medium, Balancing Act and Open Society Initiative.

He pointed out that the chief executive, Balancing Act, Mr. Russell Southwood dwelt on understanding the issue and status of digital transition, while Messrs Remmy Nweke, Segun Oruame and Chukwuemeka Okereafor of Champion Newspapers and award winning ITRealms’ blogger, ITEdge.com and chief executive of Atmosphere Communications in that order.

Edet informed ITRealms Online that the objectives of the workshop was to provide information on the key issues related to digital migration, explore the current state of play in Nigeria, discuss approaches to addressing some of the key challenges, especially for the nation’s media practitioners to understand the essence.

He emphasised that Africa’s digital transition in broadcasting has the potential to improve both the quantity and quality of what is available on TV and to increase the number of people who will be able to watch it.

Edet stressed that transition from analogue to digital affects different stakeholders in different ways.

Remmy Nweke
ITREALMS Online ... delivering news for ICT4D

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