The House of Representatives has agreed and adopted the Pay-As-You-Go plan for digital satellite operators and also slashes the price for subscriptions for DSTV and other cable TV service providers.
This was made known after the recommendations made by the Ad-hoc Committee on Non-implementation of Pay-As-You-Go and sudden Increment of Tariffs plan by Digital Satellite Service Providers was considered and approved by the House on Wednesday.
The Chairman of the Committee and member representing Ukanafun/Oruk Anam Federal Constituency, Rep Unyime Idem, laid the report before the House during its plenary in Abuja.
Making the consideration, the House called on the Federal Government to as a matter of urgency expedite action on implementing the content of the National Broadcasting Code and the Nigeria Information Policy of 2014.
According to the agreement reached by the House, they said the new policy would trigger healthy competition in the industry, adding that the entertainment industry had a wider spectrum with limitless job and wealth creation opportunities for the teeming youths.
The House also said the visible absence of competitors in the industry was tacit approval of monopoly by the present operators.
Also, the House suggested that timely application of government regulatory intervention measures already articulated would revolutionize the industry and meet the people’s yearnings for Pay-As-You-Go, Pay-per-view, and price reduction.
According to the recommendation, the existing laws that moderate operations in the industry is to be fine-tuned to meet the 21st- century regulatory laws of the industry that is dynamic to the entertainment industry.
The House said the National Broadcasting Commission that is saddled with the duty of licensing and supervising the activities of service providers must also have the power to moderate in the protection of consumers to guard against exploitation.
The House further said there was little or nothing a regulator could do if he was handicapped by laws that were not properly tailored to the needs of the society.
Furthermore, the report stated that price increase and reduction have always been contentious issues for producers and consumers in the business world.
The House also listed the factors responsible for the hike in subscription fees as the recent increment of VAT by 2.5 percent by the Financial Amendment Act of Jan. 13, 2020, and the fluctuating foreign exchange rate in the country that affects the cost of content.
Other contentious issues listed are broadcast equipment, experienced hire and technical infrastructure, increase in bouquets for a wider choice, inflation on the cost of production, and need to maintain the workforce.
They identified the need not to throw many young Nigerians who are gainfully employed by pay-tv into the labor market.
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