Uganda: UBC Faces Disconnection Over Shs189 Million Debt

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The State-owned Uganda Broadcasting Corporation television and radio may be disconnected from the satellite over alleged failure to pay about Shs189 million to Big Dish, its satellite link provider. Daily Monitor has learnt that Big Dish officials have given UBC only today to come to "an amicable commercial agreement" with the satellite provider or be disconnected.

UBC uses the satellite link to beam its audio and visual programmes to its booster stations across the country and beyond. UBC is using Big Dish's satellite capacity lease number 7336 IS 906. The consequence of the disconnection would imply that UBC's reception countrywide would be blurred because the transmission boosters cover shorter distances without the help of the satellite link.

However, in the event of the disconnection, other television stations operating in Uganda would not be affected because they use other providers for satellite linkage. On Tuesday, Big Dish officials were locked up in a crisis meeting with officials from the Uganda Communications Commission and UBC to solve the impasse.

The Monitor (Kampala), 17 May 2007