Community radio stations important for development-Kasongo

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The Zambia Community Media Forum (ZaCoMeF) has expressed happiness at the operations of community radio stations in the country.

Speaking to ZANIS in Lusaka today, ZaCoMeF Senior Programmes Officer for Media Development Gillief Kasongo said community radio stations do not only keep the public informed but also provide a forum through which people can participate and be heard.

Mr. Kasongo said community radio stations in the country have enabled people in different communities especially those in remote areas to make informed decisions on issues of national interest and were kept abreast on current affairs.

He said private radio stations were key to the development of Zambia because some programmes that were broadcast have helped change the people in communities socially, politically and economically.

He noted that community radio stations do not only air programmes that affect the elderly in the community but also those that affect the youths.

Mr. Kasongo cited a radio station in Itezhi Tezhi which has a segment that was solely run by the children and challenged other media houses in the country to emulate it.

He also noted that the involvement of young people that participated in the just ended World Radio Day in February this year was a good contributing factor to the morals of future leaders of the nation.

There are about 70 community radio stations and 10 private television stations currently operating in Zambia.

Information and Broadcasting Services Minister Chishimba Kambwili recently said government recognizes the efforts of the fourth estate in informing, entertaining and educating the public.

He said government would therefore continue to provide and offer more licenses to individuals and institutions intending to set up private radio and television stations.