Better TV, radio broadcasts for East Malaysians

KUALA LUMPUR: Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak is expected to announce the radio and TV broadcast to Sabah and Sarawak via a Measat satellite transmission on May 12 in Sibu.

Information, Communication, Culture and Arts Minister Datuk Seri Dr Rais Yatim said the ministry had discussed with Astro, which operates the satellite, to provide the best TV broadcasting service to the people of Sabah and Sarawak.

In line with the 1Malaysia concept, the minister said, the people of Sabah and Sarawak would get good TV reception, which many areas in the two states had been deprived of.

“The FM radio broadcast too cannot be received in many areas of Sabah and Sarawak but we may focus on improving TV reception first,” he said.

Rais said the Government would also be able to save costs by using the satellite broadcast service which is more practical because putting up a new transmission tower could cost as much as RM90mil.

According to him, the ministry through the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (SKMM) is studying the cost involved in supplying residents with set-top boxes to receive clearer images on their TV sets.

“We have to look at several models which are new and will not burden the people, for consideration,” Rais said. “If the SKMM can bear the minimum cost of the set-top boxes, then perhaps consumers will only have to pay the minimum from the actual cost of the device. We are looking into this.”

Rais said the Prime Minister would also launch the 1Malaysia People’s Computer, under the national broadband and high-speed broadband initiatives, next Wednesday.

“We will distribute at least 1,000 computers to schoolchildren, rural community leaders and residents of longhouses, fulfilling our aspirations in the broadband area,” he said. — Bernama

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