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‘Talk Radio adds no value’

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Veteran Zimbabwean journalist Tapfuma Machakaire has condemned the introduction of the Zimpapers’ Talk Radio, a new kid on the block in local broadcasting, saying it will not add value in the industry.

Addressing journalists at a human rights workshop organised by the Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights in Bulawayo on Thursday, Machakaire said diversity was a necessity in the media.

“Although this is an improvement from the previous years, as we are beginning to experience signs of diversity, the Zimpapers’ Talk Radio will be having a Chronicle-based editorial policy which will be transferred to broadcasting. This simply means rather than reading the print version of the Chronicle, we will be viewing and listening to the broadcast version,” he said.

However, Machakaire said he was not opposed to the new station coming on board.

“I am not opposed to the broadcast station. What I am saying is that is it really diverse enough? Zimbabwe should imitate their neighbour South Africa which has over 100 community radio stations.

“It is amazing how this has been possible in South Africa which gained its independence in 1994 yet Zimbabwe, even after 32 years, still has the same radio stations that it had when it attained independence,” he said.

Media consultant Lenox Mhlanga said there was need for journalists to advocate for a public broadcaster where information was not controlled as is the case with the country’s broadcast stations.

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