Minister of Information, Lai Mohammed has said that the Nigeria Television Authority (NTA) will compete with the likes of Cable News Network (CNN) if his ministry gets the $500million loan it requires for the upgrade. The minister said this when he appeared before the senate committee on local and foreign loans.
The $500 million is part of the $30 billion loan President Muhammadu Buhari is asking the national assembly to approve. According to Mohammed, NTA can only achieve this feat when it is digitised as there is already manpower in place. The Guardian quoted Mohammed as saying; “If this project is approved, there will be more visibility for our people in the music, fashion and film industries.
“In 2014, we made $23 million from music alone and about $53 million in 2019 and we are looking forward to making $83 million in 2025. “You can imagine the kind of growth we will have if only we digitise all the NTA stations in the country.” “Apart from agriculture, which is the largest employer of labour in Nigeria, especially the youths, the next largest employer of labour is the creative industry,” he said. “The International Telecommunication Union (ITU) in 2006 gave June 17, 2015, as deadline for all members of the organisation to migrate from analogue to digital. “Regrettably, we were unable to meet the deadline along-side most countries in sub-Saharan Africa, the deadline was moved to 2017, which was not reliable and today the target is June 17, 2020.”