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  • November 28, 2015
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The Director General of National Broadcasting Commission, Mr. Emeka Mba, has been adjudged the African Broadcast Regulator of the year 2015.  The award which came after an African Development Magazine (ADM) survey of broadcast regulators across Africa signified that Mr. Emeka Mba and NBC topped others for improving broadcast regulation and encouraging the Digital Switch Over (DSO).

According to the organisers, the African Development Magazine Awards were created to recognise individuals and organisations that have excelled in promoting development in various areas. The presentation, which was made at the twin event of the Fourth ADM International Conference on Development and Awards of Excellence 2015, took place at the International Hotel Nairobi on November 20th, 2015. 

Two keynote speakers from the African Development Bank (AfDB) and the United Nations (UN) renewed the need for regional integration in Africa through improved trade among countries in the continent.  Mr. Gabriel Negatu, Regional Director, Africa Development Bank, East Africa region, pointed out the need to remove barriers along the borders as a catalyst for improved regional trade.  He emphasised that African countries do not trade enough with each other because industries were not adequately differentiated to encourage trade.  He stressed the need for African countries to produce distinct goods that are sellable to the continent adding that differentiation in trade and production will not only add to the value chain but encourage specialization and product exchange.  He listed poor regional infrastructure and bureaucracy at borders as impediments to trade.

In a related paper, Dr. Richard Munang, African Director for Climate Change at the United Nations Environmental Programme (UNEP), said that land degradation and illicit financing was making the continent to lose about 150 billion dollars every year.  He pressed on wasteful subsidies in Africa assisting elites and impoverishing the poor and the need to focus on education and integration in Africa.

The climax of the event was the award of African Broadcasting Regulator of the Year to the Director General of the National Broadcasting Commission, Mr. Emeka Mba.  The organisers stressed that; “this is in recognition of his untiring effort in repositioning the broadcast sector and effectively piloting the Digital Switch Over (DSO) in broadcasting.” They noted further that, with his vision and energy, “Nigeria will, certainly lay the foundations to being the world leading digital economy, with the largest free-to-Air digital platform launch in the world.”

Receiving the Award on his behalf, Dr. Igomu Onoja, supported by Mrs Ojone B. Otonoku, thanked the organisers for the recognitions, and pointed out that the mission of the Director General, Mr. Emeka Mba, is not just to attain a successful Digital Switchover, but also to reap the immense benefits that come with it.

Commenting on the award, the Director General, Mr Emeka Mba said “ I thank God for this honour which recognises the efforts being made by our team at NBC as well as partners and stakeholders to take Nigerian broadcasting to a higher level. I thank President GMB and the Hon. Minister of Information and Culture for their support in advancing the national digital switch over (DSO). I am deeply grateful and honoured and I dedicate this award to Nigerians, the focus and beneficiaries of our efforts. This award will motivate us to work harder to make digitisation and other initiatives a shining reality for Nigerians”

Fifteen other organizations also received awards in different categories, among which are Sahara Power Group, Nigeria Army Post Service Housing Company Ltd., Ecobank, National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN); Leading Edge Consultants, Kenya Ports Authority and ARM Cement for excellence in various areas of development.

The Director General and the Commission were represented at the event by Dr. Igomu Onoja (Deputy Director, Jos Zone) and Mrs. Ojone B. Otonoku mni, (Deputy Director, Investigation and Enforcement).


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