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General News of Saturday, 22 September 2018


Startimes ‘lobbying’ Mrs Akufo-Addo over controversial digital deal?

Mrs Rebecca Akufo-Addo receiving a customized Startimes shirt Mrs Rebecca Akufo-Addo receiving a customized Startimes shirt

Startimes, a Chinese media conglomerate at the center of a controversial Digital Terrestrial TV network deal has donated heavily to the Foundation of First Lady Rebecca Akufo-Addo.

Ghana Independent Broadcasters Association (GIBA) and some other stakeholders have warned the government against wasting money on the deal.

While the donation from Startimes, which took place in Beijing last week has nothing to do with TV networks, it is believed the gesture is one of the means the Chinese are warming their way into the confidence of the president.

Mrs Akufo-Addo posted an update about the ‘gift’ from Startimes:

“Earlier today at the StarTimes Corporation in Beijing, China I was excited to see the unveiling of the design, of a football kit to be used by Ghanaian children, in a sports exchange programme later this year.

Last year my foundation, the Rebecca Foundation signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Licang District Experimental School, in Qingdao, to establish an exchange programme, between Ghanaian and Chinese schoolchildren beginning this year.

I got a tour of the impressive Star Times Corporation by the Founder Mr. Pang XingXing Who through his impressive global company is supporting the children with sports kits which includes, jerseys, socks, bags and water bottles. I am most grateful for the support and look forward to an effective collaboration.” She wrote.

Startimes are being contracted by the government to build an enhancement to Ghana’s DTT infrastructure.

But K-NET, the Ghanaian company already doing the work have disputed the need for any enhancement to the network they have built. They say they have either provided or build in capacity for every single enhancement prescribed by government except the solar energy, which, according to our source, KNET has already proposed to the government.

In essence, StarTimes could be getting a contract to do work already done by the Ghanaian company.

They also claim they were the ones who proposed that the government sell off some 4G spectrum licenses to finance the DTTP project.