THE government has availed $40m (over Rwf 20 billion) to the state-owned broadcaster, ORINFOR, to migrate from analog to digital broadcasting, according to the agency’s acting Director General.
Speaking to The New Times, yesterday, Willy Rukundo, said that the funds will be used to lay down necessary infrastructure.
Preparations are underway to shift to digital broadcasting, which includes buying new digital TV sets or buying a gadget that will assist connecting the available TV sets in households to receive digital signals.
“Engineers from the USA are already on the ground; they are constructing new antennas. Some antennas are very old and cannot accommodate the new equipment that we are going to mount, and new transmitters have been brought,” said Rukundo.
He added that the engineers are expected to complete all the necessary installations including mounting antennas and transmitters by the end of September.
At least ten transmitters worth 250, 000 Euros have been imported which is expected to increase countrywide coverage from the current 60% to between 75 – 80% coverage, he said.
The ORINFOR boss added that after full installation of digital transmission is complete, TV signals are expected to hit 95% with clearer images.
“We have actually acquired stronger transmitters that have been mounted on Jali Hill in Kigali with capacity to transmit 2 kilowatts, replacing one that was transmitting 800 watts.”
He added that the 40-watt transmitter in Musanze will be replaced with one of 500 watts, while the Nyarupfubire station, will be upgraded to 400 watts.
“Areas where there were no signals at all will also be catered for, such as a new transmitter to be installed in Nyabitimbo, Bugarama with 350watts,” Rukundo explained.