21 Aug 2019 14:20pm
WINDHOEK, 21 AUG (NAMPA) The Namibian Broadcasting Corporation (NBC) collected N.dollars 67 million from television licence fees over a period of three years, stretching from 2016 to 2018.
This was announced by NBCs Director-General (DG), Stanley Similo, during a hearing with the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Public Accounts in the capital on Monday.
According to the DG, NBC collected N.dollars 21.8 million in 2016; N.dollars 20.8 million in 2017 and N.dollars 26 million in 2018.
The TV licence fee is N.dollars 204 per annum, per television set, however, people living with disabilities, pensioners and war veterans pay a subsidized N.dollars 60, while commercial establishments such as hotels, shops and lodges pay N.dollars 440 annually.
Similo said the potential amount the NBC has set is N.dollars 46 million per year, however due to the reluctance of Namibian citizens to pay their licences as prescribed by the law, this figure remains a challenging target to reach.
He noted that NBCs licence holder database currently stands at over 230 000 accounts, however, the broadcaster faces challenges of being unable to send out paper invoices due to high cost and instead sends to only established corporates and those with emails availed to NBC.
Other efforts include its multi-media platforms to get its payment reminder messages across and marketing campaign such the Pay your TV licence which was launched in 2017.
People are reluctant to pay their TV licences. However, we are also mindful in this economic situation that the TV fee is battling with other household necessities, therefore we do not know where the compliance of paying a TV lies in such an economy, he noted.
He added that NBC also took note of peoples concerns about the content, hence two reality TV shows, Body with Maria Nepembe and On the Street were added, which people have appreciated.
Furthermore, he noted that NBC has embarked on developing more friendly payment methods, such as phone application, vending machines and are in consultation with the Ministry of Finance to acquire a deducting code which will allow all civil servants to pay their TV licences monthly directly from their salaries.