The history of television broadcasting in Nigeria has been dominated by the applicability of the medium for political propaganda and instructional broadcasting. This article investigates the political and pedagogical drivers behind the introduction of television in Nigeria. This took place between 1959, when Western Nigeria Television (WNTV) was founded, and early 1962, when the federal government and every one of the three regional governments in existence had its own television station.
Television stations proliferated at the same time that new states were created. This resource wastage and proliferation were stopped with the creation of the Nigerian Television Authority (NTA). Politics and education have been the driving forces for television development in Nigeria. The article evaluates Nigeria’s history of television broadcasting and comes to the conclusion that it has been mainly effective.
HISTORY OF TELEVISION IN NIGERIA
Below, we’ll talk about the development of television in Nigeria.
ESTABLISHMENT OF REGIONAL TELEVISION STATIONS IN PRE-INDEPENDENCE NIGERIA
Radio broadcasting was formally launched in Nigeria on December 2, 1935. This happened as a result of the British colonial rulers’ 1932 order. Since radio broadcasting started in Nigeria more than 20 years ago, the regional governments have been worried that the national government regulates the content of radio stations nationwide. The McPherson Constitution was altered in the late 1950s to permit local control of the country’s broadcasting. This led to the emergence of numerous radio and television stations in the three regions of Northern Nigeria, Eastern Nigeria, and Western Nigeria at that time.
ESTABLISHMENT OF WESTERN NIGERIA TELEVISION (WNTV)
The Western Nigeria Television was created in 1959 as a result of a proposal made by Chief Anthony Enahhoro.
The Western Nigerian government and Overseas Rediffusion Limited collaborated to launch WNTV. The former contributed to the startup capital and operating expenses. Two transmitters located in Ibadan and Abafon were used when the TV station first went live. The foreign company’s cooperation with the Western Nigerian government quickly came to an end. As a result, WNTV was acquired by the Nigerian government exclusively.
By 1975, WNTV had roughly 60% of the Western State’s population under its broadcast reach thanks to continual facility expansion. The majority of the shows produced for WNTV were made in the Yoruba language and had a strong educational and local focus.
ESTABLISHMENT OF EASTERN NIGERIA TELEVISION SERVICE (ENTV)
Eastern Nigeria Television service was inaugurated on October 1, 1960, which was Independence Day. The eastern regional government acquired the foreign partner in the beginning and took exclusive ownership of the television channel.
Initially, the Enugu district was the exclusive area of coverage for ENTV. As facilities developed over time, Port Harcourt and Aba came under the coverage. By 1964, ENTV’s coverage encompassed all of the eastern region’s limits. Plans have been made to expand ENTV’s operation to include all of Nigeria and its neighboring nations. Sadly, the television studio was devastated by mortar shells when the Nigerian civil war started in 1967. ENTV did not start broadcasting again until 1970.
ESTABLISHMENT OF RADIO AND TELEVISION KADUNA (RKTV)
The Northern Nigerian government negotiated a cooperation to further the interests of the region, leading to the founding of Radio and Television Kaduna (RKTV). RKTV started broadcasting from a transitory station in Kaduna’s Independence Hall of Government College in 1962. RKTV relocated to a permanent location a year later. In that locality, a television station was broadcasting for three hours every day, seven days a week. About one-third of the content for the shows, which were created in both English and Hausa, was derived from local sources.
The relationship between the international partners and the Northern Nigerian government flourished because RKTV was the station with the best equipment among the three regions. RKTV also reached the greatest market, with over 30 million people at the time.
ESTABLISHMENT OF NIGERIAN TELEVISION SERVICE (NTS)
The Nigerian Television Service was created by the federal government on April 1st, 1960. (NTS). They committed to National Broadcasting International for five years under a management and training agreement. According to a federal government decision, NBC assumed control of the NTS basic programming rules in 1963 and maintained them until the NBCI contract with the network terminated in 1967.
Although NTS initially faced issues with inadequate equipment, a small studio, and a focus solely on Lagos, these issues have since been resolved. The television station quickly increased its capacity, relocated to a permanent location, and enhanced its coverage to encompass the entire Western region. The NTS’s programming included domestic productions, international films, newsreels, and instructional resources.
GROWTH OF TELEVISION STATIONS ACROSS NIGERIA
The federal military administration reorganized the nation from four regions into twelve states, and then into nineteen states later on, after it came to power in 1966. The number of television stations across the nation increased as new states were added.
THE TAKEOVER OF ALL TELEVISION STATIONS BY THE CENTRAL GOVERNMENT IN 1977 AND THE ESTABLISHMENT OF NTA
Every one of the state commissioners of information convened a committee in 1968. They proposed putting the country’s radio and television stations under the administration of the federal military government. The thought of surrendering control of their radio and television stations didn’t sit well with some regions. To make it possible for the federal military administration to assume control of all television stations in the nation, the constitution had to be changed. The federal government suggested nationwide color television in 1977, when there were ten television stations in Nigeria.
The Nigerian Television Authority (NTA) was created in 1977 as the first indigenous tv station in the country to oversee the operations of Nigerian television stations. Nigeria has 19 states in 1977, and 10 of them had television stations.
The television stations in each of the 19 states were renamed Production Centers and operated under NTA supervision. They all carried the NTV call sign, but each station was unique based on where the state capital was located.
DEREGULATION OF BROADCASTING IN NIGERIA
The Nigerian broadcasting business was deregulated in 1992 under the leadership of General Ibrahim Babaginda. This made it possible for businesses and private persons to run radio and television stations. After 30 years, in 1992, DITV launched as the first private television channel. Nigeria’s television market is still thriving.