DSO: FG Commissions West Africaʼs Largest Set Top Box Plant in Calabar
- at 7:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Olawale Ajimotokan in Calabar
Nigeriaʼs transition towards Digital Switch Over (DSO) received a major boost thursday when the federal government inaugurated the country and West Africaʼs largest Set Top Box (STB) plant in Calabar. Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, inauguratedthe ultra-modern plant cited inside the Calabar Free Trade Zone thursday, at an elaborate ceremony that had in attendance several dignitaries, including Cross River State Governor Prof Ben Ayade and the Director General of the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC), Isqah Kawu.
The Surface Mount Techonogy (SMT) plant developed by Gospell Digital Technology has the capacity of placing 250,000 components of auto chip placement lines and pneumatic assembly lines per hour. It is can also produce 200,000 STBʼs (decoders) and 100,000 printed grant braids per month. The Managing Director of Gospell Digital, Geoffrey Ohuabunwa, said
apart from TV decoders, the plant, employing indigenous materials,
is capable of manufacturing pre- paid electricity meters, digital
television antenna, smart phones, TV main board, tablets, computer
and all forms of electronic devices.
Mohammed applauded the financiers of the assembly plant for
exhibiting absolute confidence in the future and economic
prosperity of the country, and towards the DSO programme.
He said the inauguration of the STB making plant was one of federal
governmentʼs most important digitalisation initiatives.
“It is quite impressive that the facility we are commissioning here
today has the capacity to produce 2.4 million set top boxes annually.
The facility has already created 500 jobs, meeting a cardinal
objective of the DSO programme,” Mohammed said. He said going by its achievements in so short a time, the companyʼs
vision of becoming the leading manufacturer of household
electronic video, home entertainment and electrical appliances in
Africa was very much within its reach.
Apart from fast-tracking the transition from analogue to digital in a
simple technical sense, the minister said government was
committed to improving Nigeriansʼ viewing experience and offering
them increased variety of channels and services.
According to Mohammed, under the next phase of the DSO,
government planned to launch a number of initiatives geared at
effective development of the digital economy and making Nigeria
the largest supplier of digital equipment to the whole of West Africa.
Others include creating an Electronic Programme Guide would also
be a platform for Application (App) developers to create products
that would make life easier for the consumers, growing the TV
advertising market by $400million per annum through audience
measurement and creating a N100 billion per annum FreeTV
distribution for Nollywood.
Ayade, who described Calabar as Nigeriaʼs safest city, said that
Cross River as boundary state, would enable the effective marketing
of the entertainment products to the young people.
He subsequently ordered for the purchase of 5,000 decoders as
support to the manufacturers.