Digital Migration: Government to be sued again if…

Star Communication Network Technology, the company that sued government for abrogating a contract over the terrestrial digital migration, has hinted it may drag the government of Ghana to a court of arbitration, if it fails to give “any satisfactory response” to them by early July.

According to Star Communication, it has taken various actions to dispute the unlawful nature of the purported termination of the contract between them and the Ministry of Communications.

Ghana missed the international deadline on Thursday June 17 2015, which would have seen about  250,000 households out of 6 million watching TV.

In a letter cited by tv3network.com, Star Communication said it has amongst other things commenced the following actions;

1. legal proceedings in the Supreme Court of Judicature, in the High court of Justice Commercial Division, Accra…”

2. Instructed Hogan Lovells to have issued a letter of intent dated March 4, 2015 addressed to the AG and

3. Invoked diplomatic efforts to resolve the issue.

The letter further indicated that “due to the current diplomatic efforts on foot, our client has postponed taking further legal action however we are instructed to date, our client has not received any satisfactory response from the Ministry of Communication.”

Member of the legal team of lawyers for Star Communication said “please be advised that we are instructed to commence formal arbitration proceedings if the dispute is not resolved satisfactorily within 30 days of the date of this letter.”

Star Communication earlier this year dragged the Communications Ministry to the court of arbitration over what it described as “unlawful termination of its contract” with government, to migrate Ghana onto the digital terrestrial television system.

Meanwhile, K-NET, an indigenous broadband service providers won the contract to deploy the infrastructure to migrate the entire nation unto the one national digital platform.

The country has been divided into 3 zones for the migration. The First phase will see greater Accra and Ashanti regions migrated unto the digital platform by the October 2015.

The Volta, Upper East, Upper West and the Northern regions will be in the second phase which is expected to be completed by December 2015.

Brong Ahafo, Western, Central and Eastern regions are in the final phase to be completed by March 2016 instead of an earlier February 2016 target.

Households without the digital TV set will continue to watch 23 analogue free to air channels, one more year after the March 2016 target. 

Not all flat screens are digital TVs. The national communications authority has certified over 100 receivers and TV sets but there are still issues with fixing the price for a set top box and the ability of low income households to afford it.

The digital migration broadcasting committee says it will start massive public education to get everyone to understand the complex digital terrestrial migration.

By Martin Asiedu-Dartey|3news.com|Ghana
@NewsyMartin

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