The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed says the Digital Switch Over (DSO) will help to boost the Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) of States through its value added services.
The Minister said this on Saturday when he led members of the Ministerial Task Force on a visit to the Lagos state Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu at Lagos House, Marina.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Mohammed is chairman of the task force saddled with the responsibility of driving the successful execution of DSO, the process of transiting from analogue to digital terrestrial broadcasting.
The minister specifically said the value added services to be provided by DSO and FreeTv would support Local Government Areas in the 36 states in the collection of television and radio license from residents.
He said with the successful completion of DSO project, FreeTV would be available nationwide on both Digital Terrestrial Television (DTT) and Direct To Home (DTH) transmission.
Mohammed said in addition to broadcast services, FreeTV would also provide value added services like, Push Video on Demand, Information Services and Audience Measurement.
“The DSO is not just about high fidelity sound and picture, it is about creating jobs, especially for our teeming youths, stimulating local content and empowering channel owners.
“In the next three years, the DSO is capable of creating one million jobs, in the manufacturing of Set Top Box or Decoder manufacturing; TV Production, Film Production, Distribution as well as TV and Online Advertising.
He said people could also cash in on the Push Video-on-Demand capability of the FreeTV platform to access premium blockbuster Nollywood movies from the comfort of their homes.
Mohammed said the FreeTV platform could also be used to broadcast information on activities, policies and progrannmes of respective states to viewers.
“A major advantage of the DSO is that viewers will not pay subscription fees.
“Once they have acquired the Set Top Box and pay the once-a-year access fee, which is a token, its free viewing all the way.
“Millions of Nigerians who cannot afford to pay the rising subscription fees being charged by the Pay TV platforms can now enjoy the benefit of digital television.
“This is the meaning of bridging the digital divide,’’ he said.
Mohammed recalled that the government inaugurated the DSO rollout in Jos April 30, 2016.
He said after the inaugural launch, they had rolled out in four more states – Kwara, Kaduna, Enugu and Osun – and the Federal Capital Territory.
The minister said they would begin the second phase of the DSO rollout in Lagos state on April 29, which would be followed by Kano state on June 3, Rivers on July 8, Yobe on July 15 and Gombe on August 12.
He said more states would be slated thereafter, until the entire country was covered.
Mohammed said the courtesy visit was to brief the governor on the roll out in Lagos and to seek the support and cooperation of the government and the people of the state.
In his response, the governor said the state would give its support to ensure the successful execution of the DSO project in the state.
Sanwo-Olu derscored the importance of the DSO in job creation, revenue generation and dissemination of information and bringing government closer to the people.
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