Namibia: No Porn Channel for DStv Viewers

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Fans of adult entertainment who were eagerly anticipating a possible porn channel on DStv have been disappointed.

The pay-TV service announced on Friday that the majority of its viewers had indicated that they were not ready to welcome blue movies into their living rooms.

In a press statement, the company's South African head office said that it had studied the results of a subscriber survey to test responses to the issue of adult content on pay-TV channels.

Group CEO Nolo Letele described it as "unfortunate that the research conducted was misinterpreted by some people to mean that a decision was [already] made to introduce an adult content channel in our bouquets". Research to test viewer tastes was being conducted on an ongoing basis, he said.

Ever since word spread about the porn survey, there has been an overwhelming outcry - both in Namibia and South Africa - against the intended plans. When approached for comment by The Namibian last week, the Minister of Gender Equality and Child Welfare, Marlene Mungunda, could barely disguise her disgust.

According to her, the introduction of an adult entertainment channel would have contributed to gender-based violence, drug abuse, the further escalation of HIV-AIDS and added fuel to the teenage pregnancy fire. "Some girls can contract HIV-AIDS by practising what they are seeing. It is an evil on its own. It can even go up to prostitution. It is too dangerous."

In a surprise twist, this statement landed the minister in hot water with some members of the public, because the ruling party, Swapo, holds a majority stake in MultiChoice Namibia through Kalahari Holdings.

Furthermore, Mungunda came under fire from some viewers who said they wanted the choice to decide for themselves what they would like to watch on TV, and pointed out that DStv decoders had a parental control function allowing parents to regulate what their children watch.

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