Minister of Information and broadcasting Dora Siliya has stated that the Government in collaboration with the Chinese government will soon be embarking on the Village TV programme which will benefit over 10,000 villages across the African Continent and 500 Villages in Zambia.
The Minister stated that this was part of the broad digital Migration agenda.
And Hon Siliya who is also Chief Government Spokesperson stated that what this entailed was that government with the support of China would provide communal television facilities in a number of villages which would assist the rural community to access Television facilities.
“This is part of the bigger agenda to provide universal Television access in Zambia within the next two years. ” She said .
She stated that the digital Migration itself would be completed in december of 2019 and that it was hoped by government that by that time, there would be universal television access in Zambia.
” This to me is a pre requisite for Citizens in a democracy, to be able to engage government and each other . ” She said
” I think that provision of television for entertainment, for News and Information, is a very important cornerstone for democracy.” She added.*
She stated that the development was a good achievement for Zambians which they needed to be proud of because to have universal television coverage was going to be a real milestone as it stood to bring a lot of benefits to the social , economic development agenda of the country.
Meanwhile, the Minister of Information has reechoed governments commitment to improving the ICT sector in the country.
“We believe that the growth of the ICT sector will bring rapid improvement in the social and economic development of our Country.” She said.
Hon Siliya however noted that the communications Ministry had experienced a lot of challenges with the growth of the ICT sector .
She stated that 25 years ago , there was no internet nor Smart Phones in the Nation and that with the advent of technology now, clearly new policy direction had to be provided as well as governance in terms of the sector.
” With this new technology that is accessible to a lot of Citizens globally as well as in Zambia, we must look at means of protecting the citizens especially the Children. ” She said .
She stated that such were the issues that the Ministry of transport and communications and ZICTA had been grappling with.
” As you are aware as Media, the growth of the sector has brought about a lot of threats that have been paused around the world. Threats against governments, threats against financial transactions, threats to data protection and management as well as all manner of threats that have emerged as a result of ICT growth has made it even more clear to us as government that we need more reforms so that our citizens can continue to enjoy this sector.” She said .
The Minister said this at a press briefing at Government Complex this Morning.