Su Radio Mazabuka, il Times of Zambia (da cui ho tratto la storia che segue) ha scritto questo articolo.
‘Let’s have more community radio stations’
A PARLIAMENTARY watchdog committee yesterday heard that there is need to set up more community radio stations in Zambia as they are a good platform for communication in the communities where they operate.
Mazabuka community radio station programmes manager, Bellon Chitombwa told the committee on Information and Broadcasting chaired by Namwala member of Parliament (MP) Robby Chizyuka that there was need for more community radio stations as they provided information to the communities.
Mr Chitombwa said areas which had community radio stations had good local governance compared to areas which did not have.
He was responding to a question asked by Sinazongwe MP Raphael Muyanda (UPND) who wanted to know whether community radio stations were relevant.
He said community radio stations enabled people in the rural areas to air out their views thereby communicating to the relevant authorities.
“Significant changes have been recorded as a result of community radio stations,” he said.
Mr Chitombwa who appeared before the committee with acting editor, Mokokwa Kozi said the radio station was receiving no direct funding in the form of grants or donations from any organisation.
He said the radio station earned 97 per cent of its revenue from the various programmes it carried out.
The radio station realised its income primarily from sponsored radio programmes and advertisement.
Mr Chitombwa said the financial sustainability of the radio station had not been easy from the time it started operating eight years ago.
He said the amount the radio station was raising from the programme sponsorship was not enough to expand the operations and acquire new equipment.
Mr Chitombwa said it was difficult to come up with a mechanism of having the community contribute financially to the operations of the station despite Mazabuka being one of the rich districts with viable business organisations in Southern Province.
On the relationship with the Government, Mr Chitombwa said the radio station had no serious problems in its relationship with the Government except on two occasions when some officials tried to interfere with the operations of the station.
Mr Chitombwa said Government officials from the district were not utilising the radio station for fear of being misunderstood.
He said responding to a question by Chisamba MP Moses Muteteka who wanted to know why some Government officials in the district rarely used the radio station to communicate Government’s programmes.
Mr Chitombwa said it was not true that the station supported the opposition United Party for National Development (UPND). He said the radio station was non partisan.
He urged the Government officials especially the district commissioner to feel free and use the radio station to communicate Government’s programmes to the people.