COMPLETION of analogue-to-digital transition by year-end is no longer possible due to financial logjams, The Sunday Mail Society has learnt.
The digitisation programme is being carried out by the Broadcasting Authority of Zimbabwe and Transmedia Corporations. Digital migration relates to television broadcasting, and is a process led by the International Telecommunications Union to improve the quality and quantity of programming globally.
The project appeared to be on course after Government last year released US$16,2 million for digitisation. But indications are that arrears of around US$10 million are stalling progress. Further, BAZ is failing to make international payments to buy equipment due to Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe transaction controls designed to limit a cash shortage in the country.
THE Government is set to launch an education television channel in line with the new education curriculum.
This comes as the country is implementing the digitalisation programme which we see an increase in the number of television stations countrywide.
The Minister of Primary and Secondary Education Dr Lazarus Dokora last Friday said the channel will be a platform to tell the Zimbabwean story. Dr Dokora said his Ministry was ready to support content producers.
He said presently children were being bombarded with television content with storylines that they cannot relate to.
He said already there are publishers who are ready to take up the challenge to create content that takes into account the country’s heritage. Dr Dokora said some people were still suffering from an inferiority complex and do not believe that local publishers can tell the local narrative.
THE unavailability of the National Sports Stadium has forced the Castle Lager Premier Soccer League to cancel live broadcast of this weekend’s matches in Harare.
The league’s official broadcaster SuperSport were scheduled to beam live tomorrow’s Caps United and Chapungu clash, Sunday’s epic game pitting league debutants Yadah FC and Dynamos as well as the Harare City and ZPC Kariba clash on Monday.
Kennedy Ndebele, the PSL chief executive officer, said after receiving communication from National Sports Stadium owners, the Ministry of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing, they had to stop SuperSport who were already at the Chirundu Border Post on Wednesday.
“Please be advised that we can only accommodate the two matches on 26/4/17 and 27/4/17. The other matches (this weekend’s and next week’s) cannot be accommodated because we are having two major events next week, hence there is need of setting up the venue,” wrote a J Nyikayapera from the ministry.
The major events National Sports Stadium owners are alluding to are Pastor Chris of Christ Embassy’s crusade, which will be held next week as well as the Confederation of School Sport Associations of Southern Africa (Cossasa) Athletics Championships.
TREASURY has promised to release $4 million for outstanding equipment to ensure that completed digital transmitter base stations are switched on.
Speaking during a tour of Manjolo Base Station, which has been completed about 40km outside Binga on Saturday, Information, Media and Broadcasting Services Minister Dr Chris Mushohwe said about $16 million is required to clear a debt owed to Zim-Digital contractors from China.
The Minister said Treasury has promised to disburse $4 million any time from now which will be enough to effect release of outstanding equipment needed to switch on those stations that have been completed.
THE Government is working towards revising broadcasting laws which will make it mandatory for radio stations both public and private to broadcast in the 16 official languages, a Cabinet Minister has said.
Speaking during a digitalisation tour in Plumtree yesterday, Information, Media and Publicity Minister Dr Chris Mushohwe said embracing local languages will preserve Zimbabwean culture which was suffering erosion.
“We need to revive the respect for our local languages which for a long time have been eroded by western standards. I wish our youngsters would emulate how the Chinese take pride in their language. The country has no social media headaches where citizens post anything about the Government,” said Dr Mushohwe.
RESIDENTS of Hwange have urged the Government to exempt them from paying radio and television licences since their area does not receive Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation (ZBC) radio and television signals.
Speaking at a Zimbabwe Digital Broadcast Content creators meeting in Hwange on Friday, the disgruntled residents said it was unfair for them to pay licence fees because they have never had access to local television and radio programmes since independence.
GOVERNMENT has reaffirmed its support to content producers in the country as it moves a gear up in the process of migrating from analogue to digital television and radio broadcasting.
Information, Media and Broadcasting Services Minister Dr Chris Mushohwe told content producers at Chinotimba Hall in Victoria Falls yesterday that Government was prepared to assist every Zimbabwean who wishes to participate in the digitalisation project.
Minister Mushohwe is on a nationwide tour to mobilise content producers for the digitalisation programme.
Naspers owned pay TV broadcaster, Supersport, has secured exclusive rights to screen the main English Premier League for another three seasons starting 2019.
Supersports has had the exclusive rights to broadcast the games since the EPL’s inaugural season in 1992, with the current deal expiring in 2019.
The new deal covers the 2019-2022 seasons and is for the Sub-Saharan Africa region.
A UNIT of CBZ Holdings, Datvest, has partnered with Fairview Properties to develop a housing estate through mobilising $5 million from various investment portfolios.Summary
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