There is no sign that Cabinet has discussed the revised Broadcast Digital Migration Policy (BDMP) that is holding up South Africa’s switch from analogue to digital terrestrial television (DTT).
Cabinet met on Wednesday, 3 September 2014, but according to DA Shadow Minister of Telecommunications and Postal Services Mariann Shinn, there is no word in the report of the meeting about the BDMP.
“I have lodged a Parliamentary question to Minister of Telecommunications and Postal Services Siyabonga Cwele, asking him to explain why he has not delivered on his budget speech promise to have the revised policy published by the end of July,” Shinn said.
Shinn said that the revised policy was drawn up by the office of former Communications Minister Yunus Carrim in response to public feedback. However, it was not tabled before President Jacob Zuma made significant changes to Cabinet after the general election on 7 May 2014.
“The entire country’s access to the digital economy… is being seriously constrained as spectrum unavailability and policy uncertainty deters investment in the Information and Communication Technology sector,” Shinn said.
“My letter last month to the President asking him to deal decisively in allocating the responsibility of DTT to one Cabinet Minister has not yet been acknowledged,” she added.
Shinn urged Cwele to seek an urgent meeting with the President to explain to him the urgency of prioritising the approval of the BDMP.