Other things being equal, the sorry narrative of Nigerian Television Authority(NTA) Channel 6, Aba will be rewritten very soon.Courtesy of Governor Okezie Ikpeazu, who has given assurance to rescue the station from its dilapidated state.
The intervention followed a distress call from the station’s management to the governor outlining the level of the decay in its infrastructure.
The station which was the centre of attraction earlier before now is a shadow of itself. The studio equipment are now obsolete. The buildings are now dilapidated with roofs collapsed. The fences have caved in. The state of the infrastructure at once the darling station is better seen than said.
In a pathetic explanation of the sorry state of the General Manager of the station, Nwadi Elobuike”the back fence of the station had fallen opening a way for criminals to have unfettered access to the premises”.
But who can deliver the station from this unhealthy situation if not Gov. Ikpeazu. May be that is why the management of the station deemed it necessary to sue for the intervention of Gov Ikpeazu. And their decision has paid off.
The governor has assured that help will come in seven days time. Security first. The premises, according to the governor will be secured through a perimeter fencing. The governor also demanded the survey plan to necessitate immediate action.
Go. Ikpeazu has also assured some intervention in the area of renovating the studio and major offices. In few weeks ahead, God willing, staff of the will enjoy a conducive working environment.
However, like the governor raised concern, such nationall institutions, like NTA should be allowed to suffer this level of negligence. Appropriate quarters, such NTA headquarters, should make prompt interventions in such sensitive issues.
Also, NTA Aba, like the governor acknowledged, is a key part of Aba, and its reach in viewership remains an issue to reckon with. Like the governor appealed, all hands of well- meaning Nigerians must be on deck to save the station from collapse.
Gov. Ikpeazu’s swift intervention should provide a wake up call to rejig NTA. It will be recalled that the General Ibrahim Babangida’s administration, under its Structural Adjustment Programme (SAP) partially commercialised NTA.
NTA under this arrangement was required to commercialise some of its time slots. This attempt was aimed at making the institution relocate from public broadcasting to partially commercial broadcasting network.
This trend attracted sponsored and brokered religious programmes and live transmission of weddings and funeral services on the network.
The fortunes of the institution began to decline when its monopoly was tampered, and it began to face competitions from some rivals such ad African Independent Television (AIT).
It is worthy to note here that NTA is funded partially through subvention from the federal government.
But the major criticism trailing NTA is that the content it covers is influenced by government and politicians. This has also affected it’s fortunes negatively. The has also been roundly criticised for still antiquated technology in its operations in the 21st century. Though this is largely blamed on funding.
The time to rejig this dying network is now. And Gov. Ikpeazu, in his usual manner has blazed the trail.
Once again, thank you Gov. Okezie Ikpeazu for this swift intervention. It can only come from a listening governor.