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Fed Govt Directs GoTv, StarTimes to Migrate to FreeTV Platform

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The Federal Government said it had directed two PayTv platforms – GoTv and StarTimes – to migrate their signals from self-carrying to any of the two licensed FreeTv signal distributors.

The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, who disclosed this on Thursday in Abuja, said the directive was in line with the Digital Switch Over (DSO) process.

DSO is the process of transiting from analogue to digital terrestrial broadcasting and the country has set April 29 for the resumption of the roll out of the second phase in the remaining 31 states.

The first phase of the roll out had covered the Federal Capital Territory and the five states of Plateau, Kaduna, Kwara, Osun and Enugu.

According to the minister, the laws of the land recognise a single frequency network which is being operated by two licensed signal distributors – Integrated Television Services (ITS) and Pinnacle Communications.

He said the two PayTv – StarTimes and GoTv – which are currently carrying their respective signals, is in negation of the law and must migrate to any of the licensed signal distributors of their choice.

“We have directed National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) to ask Gotv and StarTimes to go to either Pinnacle of ITS.

“They cannot carry their signals and that is the only way the licensed signal distributors can survive,” he said.

The minister gave an assurance that with the approval of N9.4 billion by the Federal Government and the setting up of a 14-member ministerial task force to drive the DSO process the remaining 31 states would be successfully and effectively covered.

He said the DSO would enable Nigerians have the opportunity to have choices of many TV stations as well as have access to quality pictures and programmes with little annual cost and no monthly subscription.

Mohammed said the plan for every state the DSO is being rolled out is to cover at least 70 per cent population coverage with Digital Terrestrial Transmission (DTT) while the remaining areas would be covered by Direct To Home (DTH).

He pledged that no part of the country would be left out without DSO signal before the final Analogue Switch Off.

Speaking on contents on the FreeTv platform, the minister said the government would set up Local Content Development Fund to assist talented young artists and content developers as well as enable budding stations to thrive.

He said part of the fund would also be used to assist veteran actors and notable celebrities to procure special licenses to either have their own channels or programmes.

CEO/Founder Investors King Ltd, a foreign exchange research analyst, contributing author on New York-based Talk Markets and Investing.com, with over a decade experience in the global financial markets.

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Over 8,000 Nigerian Doctors Now Work In UK, 353 Registered In The Last 100-Day

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The United Kingdom (UK) registered about 353 Nigerian doctors in the last 100 days, according to data from the General Medical Council – the body which licenses and maintains the official register of medical practitioners in the UK.

The GMC licensed at least 353 Nigerian-trained doctors between June 10, 2021, and September 20, 2021.

The statistics also showed that between July 24, 2020, and September 21, 2021, about 862 Nigeria-trained doctors were licensed in the UK despite the COVID-19 pandemic.

The data also showed that 8,737 doctors who obtained their degrees in Nigeria currently practice in the UK.

Officials of the National Association of Resident Doctors are speculating that the rate of migration might double in the coming weeks since doctors were not given the right remuneration.

They said that many Nigerian doctors are migrating to Saudi Arabia, which might be more than those moving to the UK.

A poll by NOI in 2018 showed that 88 percent of Nigerian doctors were considering work opportunities abroad, but experts say the figure may be higher due to the rising insecurity and economic crunch.

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Elections in Africa Must Follow Democratic Process – Osinbajo

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Africans must continue to make the extra effort in ensuring that elections in the continent go through the democratic process, remain transparent and fair, according to Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, SAN.

He said this yesterday while receiving the President-elect of Sao Tome and Principe, Mr. Carlos Manuel Vila Nova who paid him a courtesy visit at the Presidential Villa.

On the 18th of July, 2021, elections were held in Sao Tome to replace President Evaristo Carvalho, whose tenure expired on 3rd September, 2021. Based on constitutional provisions, an outright winner did not emerge from the polls and a run-off led to the emergence of Mr. Vila Nova, who would be sworn in 2nd October, 2021.

According to Prof Osinbajo “there is no question at all that for those of us in Africa, we must make the extra effort to ensure that the democratic process is very transparent. It is such a pleasure to see that that was what took place in your country which led to your election.”

Speaking about areas of cooperation between both countries, the Vice President said, “we already talked about some of the areas of cooperation…your tenure might be an opportunity to bring some of those things to fruition.”

Prof Osinbajo reassured Mr. Manuel Vila Nova of Nigeria’s support to ensure that “your tenure is as comfortable and effective as possible as partners and friends.”

In his own remarks, President-elect Vila Nova expressed appreciation to President Muhammadu Buhari for supporting Sao Tome and also thanked the Vice President for his attention, stating that Nigeria is a “friendly country” and the relationship between both countries dates back many years.

In attendance at the meeting were the Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, Ambassador Zubairu Dada, and a member of the Sao Tome and Principe’s cabinet, Mr. Americo de Oliveira Ramos.

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Ethiopian Airline To Resume Flight To Enugu Oct. 1st

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The Ethiopian Airline said on Sunday it would resume flights to Enugu as from Oct. 1, two years after it suspended flight to the South-Eastern state.

The airline’s General Manager, Shimeles Arage, who confirmed the proposed resumption in a statement issued in Lagos on Sunday, said that every week there would be a flight on Wednesday, Friday and Saturday, with B787 Dreamliner.

“Oct. 1 is Nigeria’s Independence Day and the flight to Enugu on that day will reinforce Ethiopian Airline good relations with Nigeria since the first flight to Nigeria in 1960,” he said.

Arage recalled that the airline stopped flights to Enugu in 2019 when the Nigerian aviation authorities closed the airport to refurbish the runway.

He said before the closure of the airport for runway repairs, Ethiopian was the only international airline flying to Enugu.

The airport was officially re-opened to domestic flights in 2020 and to international flights in Aug. 2021.

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