Saturday, May 22, 2010

The law on television licence is punitive, says Nyirenda

The law on television licence is punitive, says Nyirenda
By Christopher Miti in Chipata
Sat 22 May 2010, 04:00 CAT

FORMER Kasenengwa UNIP member of parliament Timothy Nyirenda has urged the government to amend the law on television licence because it is punitive.

Nyirenda told the parliamentary committee on information and broadcasting, which had a one-day sitting in Chipata to look at the mandatory migration from analog to digital system, that it was bad that some people were forced to pay TV licence when they did not watch Zambia National Broadcasting Corporation (ZNBC) television.

“The analog television system has not helped us here in Chipata. For example, when you reach the Chipata Motel area you cannot watch ZNBC TV but meanwhile all of us are forced to pay K3,000 TV licence fee. And this law which brought about TV licence is bad, punitive and should be amended,” Nyirenda said.

He said the government had not done enough to sensitize people on the migration from analog to digital system.

Nyirenda said people were already facing a lot of problems with the analog system.

Kapata ward councillor Sinoya Mwale said people especially from rural areas needed more sensitization about the transition from analog to digital.

Eastern Province FDD information and publicity secretary Frank Banda said the government should ensure that people were informed about the migration because the issue may be politicised.

Nakonde MMD parliamentarian Clever Silavwe, one of the committee members, said the mandatory migration from analog to digital need to be taken seriously.

Silavwe said the change would have a lot of effects and should not be taken for granted.

Earlier, committee chairperson Mwansa Kapeya who is also Mpika Central legislator said all nations globally would adapt to the new digital technology in 2015.

He said the International Telecommunications Union meeting that was held in 2006 in Geneva (Switzerland) decided that a change from analog to digital should be effected.

The parliamentary committee also had a meeting in Katete on Wednesday.

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