By G9ija

National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) says it is partnering with Nigerian Communications Satellite (NIGCOMSAT) to accelerate the process of digital switch over (DSO) in the country.

Director-General of the Commission, Malam Balarabe Ilelah, made the disclosure in a statement issued by Ekanem Antia, Deputy Director, Public Affairs of NBC, on Saturday in Abuja.

The statement quoted Ilelah as speaking during a visit to the Managing Director of NIGCOMSAT, Dr Abimbola Alale.

He said the visit was to discuss and identify areas where the two agencies could have a mutually beneficial relationship.

Ilelah said the importance of inter-agency collaborations could not be over-stressed, as it would add value to their mandates and strengthen their relationship which, in turn, would contribute immensely to the growth and development of the country.

The director-general said that the country had made huge progress towards the switchover from analogue to digital terrestrial television broadcasting and the benefits the viewers and stakeholders had experienced so far.

He said the next state to be switched on was Kano State, adding that it would start enjoying the benefits from Sept. 30.

Ilelah, who observed very little presence of indigenous players in the Digital Broadcasting Ecosystem, expressed willingness to encourage more local participation in the digital switchover project.

He stressed that with the support and cooperation of NIGCOMSAT, the DSO project would be seamless.

Responding, Alale appreciated the NBC boss for the visit and expressed NIGCOMSAT’s readiness to support the commission in achieving a successful DSO roll-out in the country.

She lauded the Commission’s efforts at regulating and controlling the broadcasting industry in Nigeria, saying that this had impacted positively on broadcast programmes and contents across board.

Similarly, the NBC boss paid a courtesy call on Mr Kashifu Abdullahi, Director-General, National Information Development Agency (NITDA), to seek the support of the agency towards the successful launch of DSO in the remaining states and automation of the Commission’s operations and services.

Abdullahi assured NBC of his Agency’s commitment towards realising the Commission’s vision of embracing digital technologies in its processes.

He also pledged NITDA’s commitment to incorporating NBC into its Digital Transformation Working Group (DTWG) to facilitate capacity building for their personnel and bring them up to speed on ways of having full grasp of the process.