Sunday, November 22, 2015 1:05 pm
The Federal Government says it will ensure strict adherence to the plans for 100 per cent digital television penetration by 2016.
President Muhammadu Buhari said this at the 35th Anniversary of the Silverbird Group in Lagos on Saturday.
According to him, Nigeria will be the biggest nation in Africa with digital stations in 2020.
Buhari, represented by the Minister of Information, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, said the present administration was committed to building a vibrant media industry.
He added that his administration would use digital switch to diversify the provision of channels and local content for the benefit of all Nigerians.
“It will not be an exaggeration to describe Silverbird as an iconic company in our media and entertainment industry going by what it has achieved in the last 35 years.
‘‘Silverbird has keyed into an important aspect of our agenda of creating jobs especially for our ever increasing youths, thus helping to force down crimes and enhance security.
‘‘We are still counting on a stronger cooperation with this company, the entire media industry and this government, to ensure attitudinal change among Nigerians to fight terrorism and corruption.
‘‘Sub-Sahara Africa will have 46.46 million primary digital television homes by 2020. ‘‘With adherence to 100 per cent digital broadcast by 2016, Nigeria will be the largest nation in Africa with digital station in 2020 with an estimation of 9.7million’’, he said.
Senate President, Bukola Saraki, expressed happiness for the achievements of Silverbird group. Saraki called on the management of Silverbird to continue to give their best and ensure that the Nigerian entertainment industry moved forward.
Sen. Ben Murray-Bruce, Silverbird Group’s President, said he was grateful to God for the success of the station. Murray-Bruce expressed satisfaction with what the industry has grown to be and gave kudos to all the major players that had contributed to the growth of the sector these past years.
“ I am deeply honoured and grateful to the almighty God, my family especially my mum, who is 89years old for standing by me all through these years.
‘‘I also want to thank Mr President for granting us the privilege to have him with us, and those that have been major players in the entertainment industry, ‘ ‘ he said.
Lancelot Imasuen, a film maker, called on other privately owned media companies to emulate the Silverbird group by giving their best to the industry.
‘‘Nigerians cannot live a day without silverbird group impacting on their lives in one way or another. Silverbird is a pacesetter and we in the entertainment industry must learn some of the ropes that have brought such magnitude of success to the station’’, he said.
The celebration, held at the Convention Centre of the Eko Hotel and Suites, had top government functionaries in attendance.