Zimbabwe on Monday played host of the Southern African Development Community’s regional World Radio Day commemorations under the theme “Radio is You”. Thousands of local citizens gathered in the high-density suburb of Highfields in the capital to commemorate the event.

World Radio Day is held annually in February to celebrate the power, influence and uniqueness of radio in touching lives across all continents. The African Union of Broadcasters (AUB) selected the Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation (ZBC) to host the 2017 regional World Radio Day Commemorations for the SADC region.

The SABC’s acting Group Executive Corporate Affairs Keobokile Mosweu was among those who attended the events and stressed on the importance of regional integration in all aspects of society.

He said the SABC’s footprint is visible in most southern African countries and there are plans to make sure that content from Zimbabwe is consumed by the South African audience. He however highlighted that there is more that the SABC can offer to its consumers.

“In our case radio is well run but there is a digital space that we need to explore and go into and for that alone it shows radio is growing, but also the content, you can’t just bring any content you need to focus on programmes that are developmental in nature that speak to the youth of this country as the future leaders. Stay away from illicit content and content that is offensive and focus on content that educates, informs and builds and that inspire,” says Mosweu.

Although Zimbabwe has failed to meet the deadline for migration from analogue to digital broadcasting due to funding constrains, it has however managed to license a number of national radio stations but has been criticised on its failure to license community radio stations.

“There is no reluctance to setup community radios, we have not licenced community radios yet, but we have said as government we will license them. We started off with the national ones, we were waiting for some which had not taken up, now all the radio stations have taken up, what we are focusing on are the community radios,” says Minister of Information, Media and Broadcasting Services Christopher Mushowe.

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– By SABC