The National Media Commission (NMC) wants to make sure it is the only entity that has a hand in the appointment of a board to manage the Digital Terrestrial Television (DTT) platform.
The Commission is kicking against the proposed formation of a Central Digital Transmission Company Limited to manage the DTT platform.
The Chief Executive and the seven-member Board of this company are to be appointed by the President.
This move will be unconstitutional, according to the Chairman of the Commission, Nana Kwasi Gyan-Apenteng.
Article 168 of the 1992 Constitution and section 2(1)(e) of the National Media Commission (NMC) Act, 1993 (Act 449), says the NMC is “to appoint in consultation with the President, the chairmen and other members of the governing bodies of public corporations managing the state-owned media.”
At a press conference on Tuesday, he noted that the commission had questions surrounding the transmission of the signals and the multiplex that will transmit the signals from content producers.
But he stressed that the management of the DTT platform was a point of anxiety for the commission.
Speaking later on Eyewitness News, Mr Gyan-Apenteng stated that “we are saying this is unconstitutional in view of the constitutional provisions that have been made for such appointments. So our case is very simple, that there must be an independent board and that independent board can only be appointed by the National Media Commission.”
The Commission fears that any government involvement in the appointment of the board will lead to instability anytime there is a change in government.
“We will go back to the instability of the state-owned media pre-1992; when the first thing any government did when they came to office by bullet or violence was to dissolve the board of the state-owned media, sack editors etc,” Mr Gyan-Apenteng said.
GIBA, Communication Ministry and others hold ‘fruitful’ meeting on DTT
In September this year, stakeholders involved in the implementation of Ghana’s Digital Terrestrial Television (DTT) infrastructure, held a meeting to agree on the way forward for the full rollout of the project.
Key among the stakeholders are the Communication’s Ministry and the Ghana Independent Broadcasters Association (GIBA).
The $95 million DTT seeks to guarantee multiple TV channels, clearer pictures, better sound quality and offer more opportunities for advertisers and Broadcasters, was supposed to have been completed before 2015.
But government has postponed migration to digital broadcasting for more than three times due a number of challenges.
This truce however was reached at a meeting organised by these stakeholders to find a lasting solution to the seeming impasse between the government and GIBA on the matter.
Speaking after the first meeting, Information Minister designate, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah, said the parties have agreed to engage further to deliberate on the implementation of the DTT project.
He also indicated that the CDTC will continue to be managers of the infrastructure of the DTT project.