Saturday, 13 April

Communications Minister warns of possible TV signal shutdown over unpaid DTT platform fees

Ursula Owusu-Ekuful

Communications Minister Ursula Owusu-Ekuful has issued a warning that television signals to homes and offices could face shutdown from next year if broadcasters fail to pay for the usage of the Digital Terrestrial Television (DTT) platform.

Speaking on the floor of Parliament on Monday, 11 December 2023, Mrs Owusu-Ekuful emphasized that the government, which has covered the operating costs of the platform, can no longer sustain the financial burden. Despite multiple notices, she noted that some media houses have been reluctant to comply with their payment obligations.

As of now, none of the broadcasters on the DTT platform have paid for its usage, according to the Communications Minister. She clarified, "GIBA is not a broadcaster hosted on this platform. So I don’t know in which capacity they would be acting. They have constituent members who are broadcasters on the DTT platform, but none of them have paid a pesewa to date for being hosted on the platform, so it is not correct any member being hosted on the platform has paid for it."

Expressing concern over the situation, Owusu-Ekuful warned that if payments are not made, there is a real risk of the platform being shut down due to non-payment of operational expenses. Such an outcome could lead to a disruption in TV broadcast signals.

The Communications Minister emphasised, "Government says it cannot continue to pay for it, so if they do not pay for it, unfortunately, we may find ourselves in a situation where we cannot receive TV broadcast signals because the platform will be shut down for non-payment of the operational expenses that it is incurring."