Bulawayo’s Digitization Content Producers Impress BAZ


The Chronicle

Digital TV

Danisa Masuku, Showbiz Correspondent
The content producers who have been commissioned by the government to provide material for the digital migration project are confident that they will produce content compatible with high definition (HD) television channels.

The country is working to migrate from analogue to digital broadcasting, hence the need for new content.

According to the Broadcasting Authority of Zimbabwe (BAZ), new HD channels that have not yet been used will have to have 40% local content. However, if all goes as planned, there will be 12 HD channels, six of which will be owned by the Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation, with the rest being managed by private broadcasters.

BAZ’s Broadcast Content Compliance Director – Tabeth Mazorodze, who is based in Bulawayo, said ZIMDIGITAL’s commissioning committee is running a pilot program. Some of the Bulawayo producers who have been accepted by BAZ are Raisedon Baya, Zenzele Ndebele, Thulani Mthunzi and Chrispen Mapuranga.

The four are now hard at work.

“There are four productions that are currently recorded in Bulawayo. These are Technical review which is directed by Thulani Mthunzi Ratu and Sox – produced by Zenzele Ndebele, Minana Mysteries, Myths and Magic which is headed by Chrispen Mapuranga and Insukuzokucina which is produced by Raisedon Baya, ”Mazorodze said.

She said the government, in its efforts to strengthen the film industry, has invested in cameras and editing suites used by film producers.

“The government aims to ensure a stable source of local content for licensees on the digital terrestrial television (DTT) platform. This support takes the form of state-of-the-art equipment and financial assistance, ”Mazorodze said.

Baya, a seasoned and multiple award-winning film producer, said he was pleased with the rapid progress they were making in producing a drama that will air on the TNT platform.

“We are working on a pilot for the Ndebele television series – Insukuzokucina which has 13 episodes. It’s a family drama that centers on a young prophet who is struggling with his personal and professional life.

“We are pleased with the progress made so far and can assure the nation that we are ready to provide quality content,” Baya said.

Writer and Executive Producer for Ratu and Sox, Zenzele Ndebele said that they have completed the first episode of their animation.

He embraced digitization saying, “As local artists, we are happy to benefit from this government initiative. We believe this will translate into financial benefits, ”Ndebele said.

Mazorodze who had the opportunity to watch all the productions in progress congratulated the production teams for a job well done.

“We’re here to make sure everything runs smoothly. We noticed that they do a terrific job from the clips we watched.

“There is no better proof that they are ready for the digital migration commission agenda,” she said.


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