Digital Migration in South Africa slow down due to legal issues

South Africa’s Department of Communications (DOC) declared that the analogue signal has been terminated in 88 towns in seven provinces near the sea. The DOC announced that the signal will be switch off for the inner territories during the year 2019/2020.

Despite the country being one of the richest in Africa digital migration is still below the standard of the continent in 2015 the International Telecommunications Union deadline has expired meaning that the union will no longer take care of the signal which has caused interruptions in the outer provinces.

In 2016, the Universal Services and Access Agency in South Africa (USAASA) which was responsible of the Set-top box (STB) did not deliver since the legal battle over the non-encryption of the converter was raging, the assembling of the STB was suspended and the case is still not resolved today and was brought before the Supreme Court thus paralyzing the USAASA despite the 800.000 STB produced and stored away

The delay of the transition created many problems for the key players which cannot boost the connectivity of the country.

On the matter Qedani Bayoli the acting director-general of the DOC declared : “There is a need to train qualified installers in underserviced areas to service their communities post the DTT [digital terrestrial television] and set-top box installation period, as this will help create job opportunities in economically depressed areas. The main objective is to train artisans and customer-care officer to support the government programme of switching over from the current analogue TV to digital broadcast. DTT installer training-programme funding is targeting about 2,800 beneficiaries from the local municipalities across the country, specifically rural and underserviced areas.”

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