“A lot of people have satellite dishes because they cannot stand ZBC. I hope, following the changes at the broadcaster, we are going to see some changes.”
Edwin Mlotshwa said ZBC needed to improve its coverage and programmes before demanding licence fees from the public.
“We hardly see or hear stories from this area on TV or on our radio station, yet we are forced to pay licence fees. I think it is high time that ZBC devised a pre-paid system like DSTV is doing,” he said. “Hiding behind statutory obligation while giving people poor programmes is unfair.”
The chair of the Ntabazinduna community radio station initiative, Mulungisi Dube, said the government ought to promote and encourage the setting up of community radio stations and newspapers.
“Most communities are excluded when it comes to news coverage yet there are a lot of things happening in rural areas,” he said. “Because the national broadcaster and newspapers have failed us, we need our own media that can articulate our own issues. The government should be seen to be promoting this thrust.”
Another resident, Gertrude Sidambe, defended the ZBC licence fees.
“There is no way ZBC can improve the quality of its programmes when people are not paying. The fees might be too high, but people should not complain about paying,” she said.
Jessie Majome, MP for Harare West, recently approached the Constitutional Court seeking to enforce her rights after ZBC licence inspectors visited her home, demanding a TV licence.
Majome, a lawyer, argues that she is not prepared to pay for the licence as ZBC is not impartial in its programming, particularly regarding the coverage of events and in explaining the policies of political parties other than Zanu (PF).Post published in: News