South Africans, exiled to various African countries during the apartheid era, used Radio Freedom to send key messages back into the country. The Department of Arts and Culture is now repatriating all the Radio Freedom equipment that was left behind in the host countries.

This is all part of the celebrations of the 25 years of South Africa’s democracy. 56-year-old Promise Khumalo is a broadcast veteran who knows the story of Radio Freedom. She skipped the country at the age of 14 years, and five years later she joined Radio Freedom in Madagascar.

Mam’Khumalo says returning to Madagascar 38 years later has made her nostalgic. Her memories are still a sore point, one that she is not prepared to talk about. She says Radio Freedom was a voice for the voiceless and gave people direction.

however, for the Arts and Culture Department, the mission is to preserve Radio Freedom’s history. Director- General Vusumuzi Mkhize, says Radio Freedom played a role putting pressure on the apartheid government.  “The heritage will be kept to teach future generations.”

The equipment will be officially handed over on Wednesday. It will be stored at Freedom Park in Pretoria.