MPs visit Bush to check on the state of community radio

Backchat's Bassie Montewa doing an impromptu interview with the delegation

Members of the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Communications, the Media Development and Diversity Agency (MDDA), Sentech, Post Office and Universal Service and Access Agency of South Africa (USAASA) paid a visit to Bush Radio yesterday (19 January 2012).

Bush Radio’s Managing Director Brenda Leonard gave the committee members and MDDA a tour of the station and after that gave a short presentation on the state of community media in South Africa.

Chairperson of the committee, Sikhumbuzo Eric Kholwane being interviewed

Some of the challenges that Bush Radio highlighted in the presentation included: Sentech-transmission cost, SAMRO‘s-calculation of fees, SAARF‘s research methodology and accuracy, the funding structure of community media in South Africa, as well as issues around the advertising industry and the current state of development of the community media sector.

After the presentation Chairperson of the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Communications Sikumbuzo Eric Kholwane thanked Bush Radio for being a long and outstanding example of a community radio station.  He added that he is grateful that Bush Radio is still holding the fort, and a great example to coming generation.  

MPs and other members of the delegation listening to the Bush Radio briefing

Member of Parliament and Chief Whip of the Committee on Communications Annelize van Wyk said Bush Radio is a better example of a community radio. Van Wyk added that Bush Radio serves as a blueprint of what community radio stations need.

MP Wilma Newhoudt-Druchen (left) making notes during the briefing

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One Response to “MPs visit Bush to check on the state of community radio”

  1. Lumko Mtimde Says:

    Great and a historical moment for Bush Radio, before 1994, the visits we used to get at Bush Radio were those of SAP security branch. The then Minister of Home Affairs, Danie Schutte refused us license to broadcast. We only managed to broadcast/narrowcast through UWC Radio (Radio Bush) and through cassettes produced through CASET Education Trust. The success of Bush Radio should be dedicated to its founders in the years from 1990/1, participants of the many General Meetings, Open Forums, the Co-ordinating Committee, the staff team and in particular, the late Edric Gorfinkel. Hope the current leaders of Bush Radio take it from strength to strength. The history of community radio in SA beginned at Bush Radio, specifically UWC Radio and CASET. No book of community radio in SA can be written without a mention of Bush Radio.

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