ZAMBIA is tomorrow expected to start showing digital television along the line of rail, Information and Broadcasting Services Minister Chishimba Kambwili has disclosed.
Mr Kambwili told Parliament today that President Edgar Lungu is expected to launch the Digital television on Monday next week.
“Phase one of the Digital Migration equipment installation is complete from Livingstone to Chililabombwe and His Excellence President Edgar Lungu will launch the digital migration television at the Mass Media complex in Lusaka on Monday,” he said.
Mr Kambwili said the contract to install digital migration equipment was awarded to Star Times who have since completed Phase One of the project which stretches from Livingstone town in southern Province to Chililabombwe in the Copperbelt.
He said Phase Two which will involve installing the digital transmitters in all the provincial centres will commence soon. Phase Three will cater for the rest of the country. The minister said in Phase two and three, set top boxes will be sold on hire purchase because most rural dwellers cannot afford to buy them on cash.
Mr Kambwili disclosed that ZNBC TV 1, TV 2, Prime Television and Revelation Television are the stations that will be showing starting tomorrow while other channels will be expected to give their feed to ZNBC. He said the transmitter can carry up to 20 channels hence increasing quality of television and creating more jobs.
He said ZNBC was given the right to be the national digital carrier for digital television after they paid the license fee of K 928, 000 after cabinet approved the digital migration policy. He added that private television stations will be allowed to be on the feed for six months without paying anything while a fee is being considered.
Mr Kambwili said there will be no television blackout for the those who will not buy the set top boxes along the line of rail. He said both digital and analogue will be showing side by side for six months.