ASABA/Nigeria: The Delta State House of Assembly has promised to partner with the state ministry of information at ensuring better and quality service delivery in Delta Broadcasting Service, DBS Asaba and Warri.
The Majority Leader and Chairman, House Committee on Information, Hon Ferguson Onwo made the promise when the State Commissioner for Information, Mr. Charles Aniagwu led top officials of the ministry and parastatals under it to defend the 2022 budget estimates of the Ministry before members of the Assembly Committee.
Hon Onwo, Representing Isoko South 11, described the two DBS stations as key to dissemination of governmentt policies and programs to the grassroots, and stressed the need for their proper funding.
Emphasizing that the committee wants the three state owned media outfits to succeed, the Lawmaker challenged Mr Aniagwu to leave a legacy that would stand the test of the time.
Onwo assured the Commissioner and his team of all necessary support particularly in the areas of budgetary allocations and oversight functions.
He said the committee was determined at ensuring that the right things are done in information dissemination in the state as that is the only way even their constituents can know what they are doing in the state legislature.
“We want you to succeed and we will support you in all what you intend to do. If there is anything that you can do so that we can sit in the comfort of our homes and watch DBS, we will support you to ensure that the right things are done in information dissemination because that is the only way that our constituents can know what we are doing’’ Hon Onwo said.
Other members of the Committee who spoke commended Mr. Aniagwu for his competence and antecedents since his appointment as Information Commissioner in the state.
The Lawmakers however charged the Commissioner to deepen his legacies in the information architecture of the of Delta state, stressing that their expectation is for effective coverage of the state by the state media outfits.
The Information Commissioner, Charles Aniagwu said he would continue to seek the support and cooperation of members of the Committee, even as he paid glowing tributes to the late Majority Leader and former Chairman of the Committee, Hon Tim Kome Owhefere for his outstanding support to the activities of the ministry before his demise.
Flanked by the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry, Paul Osahor; the General Managers of the three state-owned media establishments, and others top officials of the ministry and its parastatals, Mr Aniagwu explained Issues that characterized the 2021 budget of the ministry, stating that there were still much to be done to achieve the set targets.
Stressing that some obvious challenges including inadequate funds releases had been drawing back executions of laudable projects in the state media outfits, the Commissioner however expressed optimism that the narratives will change for the better in 2022 fiscal year.
He said digitization of the two broadcast stations, procurement of new transmitters and equipping of the Pointer with modern facilities were of priority in the 2022 budget of the ministry.
According to Mr Aniagwu part of the challenges bedeviling the two stations is the delayed proposed digitization plans by the National Broadcasting Cooperation, a development that has hampered the output of the stations over the years.
Mr Aniagwu told the legislators that there was the need for content synchronization of DBS Asaba and Warri to reflect the unity of the state as well as improved publication and circulation of The Pointer Newspaper.
The Information Commissioner assured the Committee of a more pragmatic approach to dealing with issues confronting the ministry and parastatals under it.
“Where we are headed is for us to be able to have a proper link between DBS Asaba and Warri; the two stations are divided and we want to link them up as one in terms of operations such that the news is reported the same. Otherwise, this means that, even with our own stations, we are dividing our state. Between now and the next seven months, we are committed to getting these stations up and running because it is a shame that Deltans cannot watch what happens in the state through our state-owned televisions. We assure you that this will be done in 2022 as Governor Ifeanyi Okowa is on the same page with us’’ Aniagwu stated.