A black business consortium is to serve papers on the Independent
Communications Authority of SA (Icasa) opposing the publication of
digital terrestrial television (DTT) regulations governing the
allocation of additional digital channels, writes Sibongakonke Shoba in Business Day.




National African Federated Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Nafcoc)
consortium is opposing the allocation of 50% of Multiplex 3 to M-Net,
saying this would extend MultiChoice’s monopoly to digital terrestrial


This will be the second court application brought against a decision made by Icasa this year.


Last month, the Congress of South African Trade Unions unsuccessfully challenged the listing of Vodacom shares on the JSE and Telkom
’s sale of its 15% stake in the company to UK-based Vodafone. This new
court application could delay the implementation of migration from
analogue TV to digital.


The digital
switch time-frame is from November last year to November 2011, although
Icasa indicated on Friday it would engage with Communications Minister
Siphiwe Nyanda with a view to extending this.






says Icasa should have allocated some of the spectrum to black
companies, and regulated to ensure the sustainability of these
black-owned pay-TV businesses.




M-Net and MultiChoice, the operator of DStv, are both owned by media group Naspers
. They enjoy a monopoly on pay-TV in SA, as other licencees — On
Digital Media (ODM), Telkom Media and Walking on Water TV (WOWtv) —
have not yet been launched.


All three, however, have indicated their interest in DTT.




is busy migrating from analogue to digital TV broadcasting. Digital TV
signals take up less space, so several additional TV channels will
become available.

Click here to read the fullr eport, posted on Business Day's website.