For those who follow the emergence of new broadcasting outfits with excitement, like me, they wont have failed to notice that a new station is broadcasting on 92..5 FM, out of Keffi, in Nasarawa state and can be heard very clearly in the FCT. It belongs to the radio arm of the Nasarawa State Broadcasting Corporation. And without sounding too immodest, I have played a small role in the emergence of the radio. At the onset of the Almakura administration in 2011, he had invited me to assist in auditing the entire media infrastructure in Nasarawa state as well as proffering suggestions on how best to reposition them.
I did a fact finding tour of these establishments and then suggested that he prioritises the turn around of the broadcasting outfits. My perspective was informed by the fact that his was the only CPC-run state in the country. He needed the state’s media resources to tell his story and to also receive feedback from the people, whose expectations of the administration were incredibly high!
I suggested that his broadcast procurement should be cutting edge and given the surfeit of dilletantes in the business, it was very vital to go for companies with the track record of performance. That was as far as my own brief went. A couple of months later, I heard that the contracts had been signed and that Almakura decided to berth with Lucky Omoluwa’s Pinnacle Communications/Harris Corporation combo.
In my mind, I knew that he took the right decision given the incredible record of broadcast procurement success they have garnered over the years; delivery was on target and the 92.5FM outfit is the first of deliveries that include television. When all these come on stream,Nasarawa state will have one of the best broadcasting outfits in Nigeria and I think it would certainly be a legacy that Governor Tanko Al-Makura can be proud of into the future.
It is also instructive, that the Broadcasting Organizations of Nigeria (BON) has also become more active in recent months, with Segun Olaleye’s appointment as Executive Secretary, and especially as Nigeria draws ever closer to the digitisation of broadcasting, by 2015. It will be a revolutionary development which should impact on broadcasting at levels that we might not even be able to envisage now. But a couple of weeks ago, BON organised a two-day workshop on “Understanding Digital Terrestrial Broadcasting”, which was well attended by broadcast managers and others.
It was equally instructive to note, that the workshop was solely sponsored by Omoluwa’s Pinnacle Communications Limited. It was a very commendable example of a company in the field of broadcast procurement, helping to sponsor the more subtle and nuanced issues of deepening knowledge about the future of broadcasting, which is already dawning upon us.
That is the type of social responsibility that private sector groups must do more often for the development of various aspects of our national life. I have spent the past eleven years editing newspapers, chairing editorial boards and writing columns and other articles; but broadcasting was and remains my first love. That is why I never stop following developments in the field and when there are green shoots of growth as we have witnessed in Nasarawa and with BON, we should acknowledge them.