Kenya TV stations face penalties for turning off digital signal

February 15, 2015 9:55 am
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Soon after the four stations went off on Saturday, DSTV put up a statement on Twitter urging viewers interested in news to watch other channels. Photo/FILE.
Soon after the four stations went off on Saturday, DSTV put up a statement on Twitter urging viewers interested in news to watch other channels. Photo/FRANCIS MBATHA.

, NAIROBI, Kenya Feb 15 – The Communications Authority of Kenya now says it will penalize NTV, KTN, Citizen and QTV for switching themselves off the digital platforms.

The authority’s Director General Francis Wangusi told reporters that action must be taken against the four TV stations for breaching regulations.
“They must face the consequences,” Wangusi said, after the four stations turned off their digital signals, denying viewers a chance to access them on DSTV, ZUKU and other pay platforms.

Soon after the four stations went off air on Saturday, DSTV put up a statement on Twitter urging viewers interested in news to watch other channels.

“Whether they were advised or not, whether they were emotional or not we will act. In this day and age emotions don’t work. Facts work. So I think they will pay for their emotions,” he added.

Soon after the four stations went off on Saturday, DSTV put up a statement on Twitter urging viewers interested in news to watch other channels.

” Dear subscribers, please be advised that Citizen, KTN, NTV and QTV have terminated their channels on all available platforms resulting in the loss of signal. We sincerely apologize for the inconvenience. For news and local programming please go to any of the Maisha Magic channels, K24, KBC or Kiss,” the short statement said.

The affected media houses have not issued any statement over the matter but there were reports that a major press conference was planned on Monday when owners will outline the way forward.

NTV, KTN, CITIZEN and QTV remained closed on Sunday after officials from the Communications Authority of Kenya turned off their transmitters in Limuru shortly after 1 pm Saturday.

The Communications Authority however, said it the stations themselves that turned off their signals from digital platforms.

Wangusi said the authority’s board would meet soon to decide what penalty to issue to the media houses, including “withdrawal of the licenses.”
Reporters from some of the TV stations switched off told Capital FM News that they had been asked to go home until further notice.

On his part, ICT Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i, who spoke at the same press conference on Sunday condemned the action by the media houses, terming it as an attempt to intimidate the authority.

“They can stay off as long as they want. But we are not going back on digital migration and they better get that loud and clear. So if these are the tricks intended to intimidate or manipulate the government, they had better think again,” the CS said.

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