The Minister of Communications, Faith Muthambi, is set to kick start for the country the process of installing the free digital television set top boxes (STB) as the country’s much delayed migration to a new broadcasting platform gains momentum. By Ujuh Reporter
The process is set to be kick started at Keimoes, Kai Garib Municipality, in the Northern Cape on the 17th of December, 2015.
Keimoes is located within the Square Kilometre Array (SKA) area, where the world’s largest radio telescope will be built.
Muthambi will oversee installation of the first batch of government subsidised STBs to the community of Keimoes. “The installation of government’s fully subsidised set-top-boxes starts here in the Square Kilometre Array (SKA) area. Television viewing experience will never be the same for many households here in the Northern Cape,” said Muthambi.
Government will distribute 23 thousand set-top-boxes free of charge to the community around the SKA area in the Northern Cape. These goes to households in the Northern Cape who have registered to receive government set-top-boxes in line with government’s commitment to provide 5 million indigent household owners in possession of TV sets, with free decoders. The registration process was kick started by Muthambi at a public event in Keimoes at the beginning of October 2015.
“This progress marks a significant milestone of the Broadcasting Digital Migration project”, said Muthambi.
“The SKA area in the Northern Cape was identified as the place where the digital migration project will first be implemented. It is quite fitting that this rollout starts here, given the huge leap forward that the SKA represents in innovation and technological advancement,” added Muthambi.
This is the first installation of Digital Terrestrial STB’s in South Africa since the digital terrestrial television policy was gazetted in March 2015.
Towns around SKA area in the Northern Cape include: Brandvlei, Britstown, Calvinia, Carnavon, Fraserburg, Groblershoop, Kakamas, Keimoes, Kenhardt, Loeriesfontein, Marydale, Nieuwoudtville, Pofadder, Springbok, Sutherland, Vanwyksvlei, Victoria West and Williston.
The South African Post Office, which is the distributing agent for the set-top-box devices on behalf of government, will be onsite to explain the process of registering TV households. – Ujuh