Fears of imminent blackout(07-12-06)

HARARE - Zimbabwean listeners and viewers risk an unprecedented radio and television signal blackout if the government does not move with speed to replace obsolete transmission equipment.
Alfred Mandere the chief executive officer of Transmedia Corporation, the sole national signal carrier

operator, confirmed the possibility of the imminent blackout. “The equipment is now old and definitely a transmission blackout for both television and radio is inevitable, it’s more like an old car that now needs to be replaced,” said Mandere.
“Government must do something fast because eventually the blackout will dawn. There is need for national investment in the radio and television sector.”
Transmedia has made an appeal for US$ 64 million to the government for the acquisition of new equipment from China, South Africa and Europe as part of its National Grand Plan aimed at replacing the existing 40-year old equipment and improve transmission coverage.
Due to lack of transmission sites and depleted stations, only 30 percent of the country receives radio and television coverage from the state-controlled Zimbabwe Broadcasting Holdings, while the other 70 percent relies on foreign stations. – MISA

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