Zimbabwe: 7 companies applied to run radio and TV stations
In Zimbabwe, at least seven companies have so far applied to run radio and television stations in the country, as the race to occupy the restricted broadcasting media space continues. Submissions for applications closed on February 29 2012, but applicants are expected to continue flighting adverts until Wednesday.
Carryslot Investments (Pvt) Ltd and Vox Media Productions have applied for the free-to-air commercial radio licence to cover Harare while the Seventh Day Adventist Church and Masego Multimedia (Pvt) Ltd want the same licence for Bulawayo. Three other companies have so far advertised for television licences. These are Red Tomato Promotions (Pvt) Ltd, Wemico Investments (Pvt) Ltd and Dr Dish's My Zimbabwe TV. Red Tomato is led by former ZTV reporter, John Arufandika. Broadcasting Authority of Zimbabwe (BAZ) Chairman, Tafataona Mahoso, refused to comment on the application process saying his organisation was only accountable to the applicants.
BAZ in November called for applications for 14 commercial radio licences for urban areas and a content distribution service licence. The 14 local radio licences would be in addition to the two national commercial broadcasting licences that attracted controversy when they were granted to ZiFM, controlled by broadcaster-cum-businessman, Supa Mandiwanzira's AB Communications and Zimpapers' Talk Radio.
Media analysts complained about the non refundable application fee of US$2 500 saying it is too exorbitant.