Private sector participation in DTT lags behind in Botswana

By John Churu, Gaborone, Botswana

Botswana Communication Regulatory Authority (BOCRA) has allayed reports that the country is struggling to meet digital transmission endevours.

Aaron Nyelesi, Deputy Director Corporate Communications at BOCRA this week said Botswana has concluded countrywide transition to Digital Terrestrial Television (DTT).

“The national Broadcaster, Btv, has launched its DTT service and in places like Ghanzi the analogue transmission has been switched off.

“In terms of the private broadcasters, BOCRA has invited applications for licensing on the digital terrestrial platform,” said Nyelesi.

He however bemoaned that, no license has been awarded as none of the applications received so far met the licensing requirements.

“In view thereof, BOCRA continues to explore other avenues including infrastructure sharing to accommodate potential local applicants.”

Nyelesi further said the process is ongoing and already some private broadcasters are accommodated on the government network albeit on trial basis.

He said the developments indicates that BOCRA’s commitments are in line with international best practice has indeed created the necessary regulatory environment to attract private investment on digital platform.

“The challenge is with potential licensees meeting set requirements,” Nyelesi said.

Meanwhile other SADC countries are also facing an uphill battle in the transition process of analogue-to-digital migration. Malawi is among the only four SADC Member States, including Namibia, Tanzania and Mauritius who failed to successfully migrate from analogue to digital before the set deadline of 17 June 2015.

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