More community radio stations set to be launched

By Gay Matambo
AS the establishment of community radio stations gathers traction across the country, government says it will continue to draw lessons from Avuxeni FM, the first community radio station to go on air in Zimbabwe.
Avuxeni FM has become a dream come true for the VaTsonga community in Chiredzi South as they were previously completely detached from the country’s broadcasting services, relying primarily on radio services from neighbouring countries.
As part of enhancing Avuxeni FM’s operational capabilities, Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services, Nick Mangwana visited the radio station this Friday to establish its challenges and proffer possible solutions.
“This was a supporting visit to Avuxeni FM. We can’t launch a station and leave it alone because it may collapse if there are no sustainable infrastructure in place. We came to find out what the challenges are if they are any. We are going to put a supporting structure to make sure the station is sustained and other stations as well,” said PS Mangwana.
Significant progress has been registered in the establishment of community radio stations across the country, with government committed to providing the necessary support.
“We are putting all the necessary effort as government to make sure that they are on air and every community is fully supported to maintain a community station which brings the community together,” he added.
Avuxeni FM officials hailed government for its continued support to ensure the station runs smoothly.
“This is a new project and we are still learning. If we keep getting visits from government like the one we had today, this enables us to rectify where we are making mistakes and be able to improve for the better,” said Savious Furumele, Vice Chairperson Avuxeni FM.
Establishment of community radio stations in Zimbabwe is a significant step by the Second Republic to address information needs of marginalised communities.