TV News South Africa

Initial community TV and radio licences evaluation complete

The initial phase assessment of pre-registration applications for Community Television Broadcasting Service and Radio Frequency Spectrum licenses on Multiplex 1 (Mux-1) frequencies has been completed by the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (Icasa).

Icasa regrets, to announce that, of the twenty (20) applications considered for Phase one of the licensing process, only one (1) applicant has successfully met all the pre-registration requirements and is therefore advancing to Phase two of the licensing process.

Integral and vital

Icasa views community TV services as an integral and vital part of the three-tier (public, commercial, community) broadcasting ecosystem in South Africa.

Community TV is intended to provide audio-visual broadcasting services owned by, controlled by, and directly responsive to the values, needs and interests of the community they intend serving, which may be either a geographic community or a community of interest. As such, they must operate on a not-for-profit basis.

Currently there are five holders of community TV licences in South Africa.

The second phase of the licensing process will be undertaken in terms of section 17 of the Electronic Communications Act, 2005 (Act No 36 of 2005) and in line with the criteria set out in Schedule B of the Invitation to Pre-Register (ITP-R).

The above-mentioned applicant will be required to submit Form B within thirty (30) days of receipt of the decision letter that has been communicated to them by Icasa

Application requirements

"It is unfortunate that nineteen (19) applicants were unable to meet the pre-registration requirements, despite a series of workshops that Icasa conducted across the country', said councillor Ntombiza Sithole, committee chairperson.

The workshops were aimed at assisting interested applicants in unpacking and understanding the application requirements of the ITP-R, in order to enable potential applicants to lodge applications that were correct, compliant and successful," added Sithole.

Icasa has provided reasons for disqualification to the impacted applicants.

"Icasa remains committed to adhering to the stipulated requirements as set in the ITP-R, applicable legislation, and regulations in order to maintain the integrity of the licensing process. The decision to disqualify applicants is grounded in the necessity ensures compliance," concluded Sithole.

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