Minister of Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services Senator Monica Mutsvangwa says government is committed to the opening of community radio stations in the country.
Community radio is a radio service offering a third model of radio broadcasting in addition to commercial and public broadcasting. Community stations serve geographic communities and communities of interest.
The cabinet minister was speaking at this year’s International Day for Universal Access to Information (IDUAI) commemorations held in Chimanimani.
Minister Mutsvangwa said, “The importance of building a knowledgeable and well informed citizenry needs not be emphasised.
“Our focus as the nation of Zimbabwe this year has been in laying the requisite infrastructural spinal cord as well as a policy and regulatory framework to enable unimpeded access and enjoyment of citizens’ right to know.
“The event here is yet another milestone which reaffirms Government’s commitment to enhance freedom of expression.”
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Regional Office for Southern Africa and the Ministry of Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services with funding from the World Bank under the UNOPS managed Zimbabwe Idai Recovery Project (ZIRP) donated a community radio broadcasting equipment to Chimanimani community on 27 September 2021.
The equipment was handed over to the community radio station during this year’s commemoration of the International Day for Universal Access to Information held in Chimanimani district on Monday.
Community broadcasting is set to improve communication in the province that was hit by Cyclone Idai that left a trail of destruction in 2019.
She added that the establishment of community radio stations will go a long way in addressing communication challenges during emergencies such as floods.
“The natural disaster-ravaged Chimanimani left scars, both physical and emotional, that continue to haunt people to this day. It calls for an efficient national communication system to best manage the negative and most deleterious effects of such natural disasters.
“The availability of a community radio station in this part of the country will go a long way in enhancing early warning systems against destructive natural phenomena such as we experienced with Cyclone Idai,” she said.