Uganda: 3 months deadline for DSO

Uganda’s Communications Commission (UCC) has issued a “final warning” to the country’s citizens that in barely 3 months it would be switching off its analogue TV transmissions.  The nation has a huge uphill task given that there are only an estimated 300,000 digital STBs in use, and some 4.7 million TV homes still to be connected.

The UCC’s executive director Godfrey Mutabazi told local press that all the necessary digital equipment has been procured, and the necessary digital signal infrastructure is being laid out across the country, ready for the switch. MMutabazi further noted that UCC will today, Jan 28, meet the parliamentary committee of Information and Communications Technology to agree on the actual date when the switching off should begin.

Uganda, while still within the ITU-mandated June 30 2015 global switch-off date, is by its own admission well behind its original switch-off plans. The initial target for UCC to switch-off analogue broadcasting was December 2012,. It was then slipped to 2013 and later to December 2014, citing a number of technical and operational hiccups.

It is estimated that although there are about five million television sets in Uganda, only about 300,000 are digital.

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