Media blackout

blackoutPLUMTREE - Residents are crying foul over the lack of telephone, radio and television transmission in their area saying they are forced to rely on foreign stations for information.

Plumtree Councillor, Paulos Hobane, said their town was being deprived of information, especially national events. We are in the dark. We do not know what is happening in our country as we are forced to watch what is broadcast from other countries. For news in the country, we rely on newspapers which are even distributed late in the afternoon as they are brought by public transport. To make matters worse, few people can afford to buy a newspaper everyday, said Hobane.

They say knowledge is power. How are we expected to be knowledgeable when there are no means of communication? It is really sad because this problem has been with us for a long time but nothing seems to be being done about it, he said. In a telephone interview, the Minister of Information Communication Technology, Nelson Chamisa, said his ministry was aware of the communication problems that other parts of the country were experiencing due to technological challenges.

We are working flat out to rectify the problem. Our aim is that by 2010 all the people in the country should not miss the glory and glitter of world cup, said Chamisa. The government has promised to upgrade and install transmitters to enable all Zimbabweans to have access to local stations.

I can assure the nation that my ministry, in consultation with Transmedia, is working tirelessly to have a digital super highway which will be connected either from Mozambique or South Africa. My main mission is to bridge the gap between the urban and rural by enabling the remote areas access to information. No areas should be left under serviced, he said.

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