THE Broadcasting Authority of Zimbabwe (BAZ) has issued eight new radio licences out of some 21 applicants with pro-Zanu PF companies and individuals among the main beneficiaries.
AB Communications, which is owned by Zanu PF Member of Parliament and cabinet minister Supa Mandiwandira and the government-owned Kingstons book shop were handed two licences each.
The development brings to three, the number of radio stations owned by Mandiwanzira following the establishment of his ZiFM radio station two years ago.
Also awarded a licence is the Zimpapers group which already owns StarFM.
Meanwhile, former ZBC chief executive Munyaradzi Hwengwere was also given a licence with the remaining two awarded to theatre guru Cont Mhlanga of Amakhosi Cultural Centre.
In a statement, BAZ chief executive officer, Tafataona Mahoso confirmed the licence awards to the following companies:
Masvingo: AB Communications t/a Gogogoi FM
Zvishavane: Ray of hope t/a YAFM
Gweru: AB Communication t/a FAYA FM
Kariba: Kingstones t/a Nyaminyami FM
Victoria Falls: Fairtalk Communications t/a Breeze FM
Mutare: Zimpapers t/a Diamond FM
Bulawayo: Fairtalk Communications t/a Skyz Metro FM
Harare: Kingstones t/a KE100.4 FM
Mahoso the licensees were expected to be on air “as soon as possible”.
“This determination by the Authority was guided by proposal each applicant for a particular licence area, the outcome of the public inquires and the guidance provided in terms of the Broadcasting Services Act,” he said.
According to BAZ, 21 applicants were received and 18 were shortlisted. Five applicants failed to meet the qualification criteria provided in terms of Broadcasting Services Act.