By Francis Emorut
Government will roll out digital migration by December 2014 to replace analogue Television transmission, the executive director of Uganda Communication Commission (UCC) Godfrey Mutabazi has revealed.
This means that the broadcasters will shut down their analogue TV transmitters and only digital TV signal will be available thereafter.
The transition or switch from analogue television to digital television is referred to as digital migration.
“By December 31, 2014 Uganda should have achieved foot prints of digital migration. The purpose is to mitigate any challenges that may arise before June 2015 which is the recommended deadline globally,” Mutabazi said in a speech read for him by Fred Otunnu, the communications affairs manager of UCC.
The UCC head urged the stakeholders who included LC5 chairpersons, Resident District Commissioners, civil society organisations, consumers and the vendors to support the process during digital migration workshop at Colline Hotel in Mukono today (Thursday).
TV set owners have been advised to purchase central box equipment also known as set- top-box to connect to analogue TV or buy new set of digital TV in order to receive television services.
Meddie Kaggwa the head of broadcasting at the regulatory body explained the benefits accrued from digital migration as better quality pictures, improved TV reception, freeing spectrum for other users and will provide new business opportunities and more players in the market.
Rebecca Mayanja, the manager of broadcasting at UCC told the stakeholders that currently there are no digital TVs in the country.
Consumer affairs manager, Ibrahim Bbossa warned the vendors who will try to make counterfeit of central box will be dealt with.
He said UCC as a regulatory agency will ensure that the vendors and manufacturers of the central box adhere to international standards.
He explained that the agency will conduct laboratory tests of the equipment to prove its conformity and issue certificates of certification and licenses to the vendors.
The broadcasting manager at Uganda Communication Commission Rebecca Mayanja operates a central box that is required to enable analogue TV to pick digital signals as the country switches to digital migration by Dec 2014.