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Opinions of Thursday, 5 February 2015

Journaliste: Cameroon Concord

Star Times, "Makala Parti":Issa Tchiroma holds the key to the kitchen

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Issa Tchiroma government spokesman's political style is hydra headed and he is noted to be involved in political flirtation (from CPDM to UNDP and back to CPDM and now in the National Salvation Front of Cameroon).

Issa Tchiroma thinks political power should go back to the North and President Biya is aware! He pretends to support the Francophone Beti-Ewondo government but underneath, lays an ocean of activities geared towards winning power back to the Fulani hegemony.

Issa Tchiroma Bakary (to use his three names) does not have an iota of respect for Prime Minister Yang Philemon for the simple fact that the Premier is an Anglophone.

Recently, Minister Tchiroma and a dubious group known as Star Times of Nigeria have spent over 900 million FCFA in what is now referred to in Cameroon as “Makala Parti” all in a bid to reverse a Prime Ministerial Order to have CAMBTV to move Cameroon to the TNT phase with regards to Numeric TV broadcasting.

Issa Tchiroma Bakary signed a Ministerial Order on January 24 in an attempt to show how desperate he is to give STAR TIMES the false impression that they will at least rehabilitate CRTV technical installations and thus have total monopoly over our State Broadcasters!

Our intelligence officer deep inside Minister Tchiroma’s entourage reported that Tchiroma's top advisor in the ministry has misled him to a point of no return, and today there is total panic at the Ministry of Communication.

However, the Issa Tchiroma/Star Times Affair that took our cream of reporters to Abuja can now reveal in this report that Minister Issa Tchiroma and his acolytes can no longer run CRTV as if it is a 'P.D.G." affair!

Star Times is a Chinese cable TV company that came into the Nigerian cable TV market to cater for a segment of the market with its subscription considered cheap unlike that of Multichoices DSTV which seems to have a monopoly before the emergence of HiTV a Nigerian based company which failed due to its inability to keep rights to the English football Premiership broadcast rights.

Star Times entry into the Nigerian market had the support and collaboration of the Nigerian Television Authority which gave it a big launch and opened the doors for it to enter the cable broadcast market.

Consequently, its perceived audience increased because of the shift of viewership to mostly cable TV by the Nigerian population. Nigerians embraced it and felt that it was an alternative to the South African based Multichoice which was seen as exploitative due to its high cost of set up and monthly subscriptions and a monopoly of sort as it had the broadcast rights to the English Premiership.

Star Times in the beginning gained some market shares as its cost was seen to be affordable regardless even in homes that already had Multichoice. Nigerians however began to complaint of poor reception and quality of programs and content.

To further their monopoly, Multichoice came up with a service under the same brand as competition -GOTV. How the regulators were able to give a licence to one company to have a complete spread of the different segments of the market still remains a mystery.

But the failure of Star Times in Nigeria was complete and total and this is what Minister Issa Tchiroma wants to bring to Cameroon.

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