The return to civic rule in 1979 opened a new vista in the political annals of Lagos state, which was created by a military fiat on May 27, 1967 with brigadier General Mobolaji Johnson (Rtd) as the first Governor.
The administration of AlhajiLateefKayodeJakande (1979-1980) saw the need to establish its own television station, which would oil its information dissemination machinery. This was perhaps informed by the fact that the state government being on a different political platform from the federal government, was not assured of adequate media coverage by federal government owned NTA.
Established in October 1980, Lagos Television commenced transmission on November 9, 1980 initially on very high frequency (VHS) channels 5. The politic of that era was not without its intrigues and part of it was the stiff opposition of the federal government to the operation of a state owned TV station on the VHS band.
When persuasion failed to make the state government shift grounds, the federal government employed subtle force by acquiring more powerful gadget with which the LTV signals on channel 5 were jammed. This gave birth to the present NTA 2 channel5.
A consensus was reached and LTV was allocated another frequency-VHS channel 8 on which it operated for many years hence the erstwhile famous call sign; LTV -8.
The formal review of the Nigeria communication laws as well as the return of military rule in 1983 engendered a new dawn in broadcasting as there was a firm directive that all TV stations, apart from NTAshould be restricted to the ultra-high frequency (UHF) band. In compliance, Lagos Television moved to UHF channel 35.
Lagos Television has been a trail blazer right from inception. Apart from being the first TV station outside the NTA family, the station took the Nigerian TV industry by storm in the early 80s with the introduction of a 60-hour nonstop weekend from 7pm on Fridays till 7am on Mondays. The then Lagos weekend Television was the first marathon TV station in Africa. It’s unprecedented public approval transformed TV viewership especially within the Lagos precinct and brought a change in the call sign LTV/LWT.
It is pertinent to also mention that Lagos Television was the first TV station in Nigeria to operate on two frequencies/bands-VHF and UHF. This explains the station’s payoff: the power of Television X2.
In September 1985, a mysterious midnight inferno consumed the entire legacy of the station. It destroyed the studios, the Library, offices and equipment even official records and personal effects of the staff were not spared. The effects of the inferno are still felt today as the archives of the station had gone up in flames.
For about one and half decade, LTV remained in the doldrums merely grappling to exist until the advent of the administration of the former governor of Lagos state, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu.
On assumption of office, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu called for a blue print on the re-engineering and re-positioning of LTV. Satisfied with what was presented and undaunted by the enormity of the capital outlay, even in the midst of competing demands, he took the bull by the horns and gave a fresh breath of life to the fledging station. This is almost taken for granted, given the fact that a pioneer of LTV was the then commissioner for Information and strategy Mr. Dele Alake.
33 years after its first signal were beamed to discerning Lagos viewers, Lagos Television; LTV still stands tall amongst its peers and remains an enigma in Nigerian TV industry.
With the encouragement and support of the Governor of Lagos StateMr. AkinwunmiAmbode, today the station has completed the transformation from analogue to digital broadcasting, it has also gone fully automated with 24hrs non-stop broadcasting.
Also LTV is now on cable satellite and Dstv channel 256 and Startimes 118 hence it can be received far and beyond the shores of the nation.
Lagos Television has remained a trail blazer as it is the only station that considers the need of its audience. It therefore introduced the sign
language to enable the hearing impaired to access to the News.
In the area of extra broadcasting activities, it has carved a niche as a truly people oriented station with the annual LTV family Christmas funfair and the ultra-modern event facilities.
No doubt LTV is still the pacesetting state owned broadcasting station in the nation.