NTA will compete with CNN, if we get $500m loan – Lai Mohammed Discloses

Nigeria’s Minister of Information, Lai Mohammed is seeking for the approval of N181.5 billion ($500 million) credit facility from President Muhammadu Buhari.

The minister on Monday 10th February 2020 disclosed that the Nigeria Television Authority (NTA) will compete with the likes of Cable News Network (CNN), an American news-based pay television channel, if the $500 million loan his ministry is seeking for is approved.

The Guardian stated that the Minister made this known when he appeared before the senate committee on local and foreign loans to speak on the importance of the $500 million which he is requesting for.

According to Lai Mohammed, if the fund was approved, NTA could be upgraded to enable it to send out signals that would be at par with CNN, adding that Nigeria has the manpower to achieve this feat.

In his words;

“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.”

The minister also said the creative industry is a major employer of the youth.
“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 further added;

“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.” 

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