Rwanda: 43 Percent Don't Listen to Radio

Distribution

A survey carried out by the Population Media Centre [PMC], an organisation working under the United Nations Population Fund-Rwanda [UNFPA] has indicated that 43 percent of the Rwandan population neither have nor listen to the radio.

The revelation was made by the PMC assistant administrator, Jean Kakule Sebatakane on April 16 at Ninzi Hotel during the official launching of a radio serial drama programme, 'Umurage Urukwiye'. The serial drama will be broadcasting on two local radio stations (Contact FM and Radio Salus) and on British Broadcasting Cooperation (BBC).

"The objective of the radio programme is to educate and disseminate information to the community. Our programme [PMC] started in other countries that had similar problems of reproductive health, HIV/Aids and poverty, like Rwanda, and the outcome was so positive and that's why we are extending it to Rwanda," Kakule said.

He added that though 43 percent of the population has no radios, PMC had negotiated with coffee cooperatives to distribute over 300 radios to be shared by both coffee farmers and the community around them. Coffee cooperatives in rural areas have so far bought over 300 radios for coffee growers to keep them updated on production, prices and any other new technical methodology used in coffee growing.

The PMC programme has what they called 'listening group' in the different corners of the country. Such groups are to be provided radios each, and it's from these groups that evaluation of the programme activities will be conducted.

The director of PMC, Rocha Chimerah, told the press that they expect the programme to reach over 40 million people who understand Kinyarwanda here in Rwanda, Burundi and other parts of DR Congo, Tanzania and Uganda.

Population Media Centre [PMC] in collaboration with UNFPA is developing a radio serial drama using entertainment education methodologies to effectively address issues related to family planning, with reproductive health and reproductive rights, combating HIV/ Aids, gender equity and women empowerment. The ultimate objective is to influence behaviour change in the society of Rwanda.

It also works to ensure universal access to reproductive health, including family planning and sexual behaviour, and over 312 drama series have so far been composed. The first drama show was broadcast on Contact FM on Thursday 19 April.

The New Times Kigali, April 18, 2007