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XINHUA NEWS SERVICE REPORTS FROM THE AFRICAN CONTINENT

 

Interactive radio program changing lives of Namibian rural children 

By Johanna Absalom WINDHOEK (Xinhua) -- On Monday afternoon in a village in Namibia’s Oshana region, a handful of children gather under a tree. On a branch hangs a black battery-powered portable radio.

They are listening to Oprogramme yuunona, a radio show on Namibian Broadcasting Corporation (NBC) Oshiwambo Radio Station produced for children and aired weekly on Monday afternoon.

The show, which delivers high-quality, children-oriented content, is featuring learners from Mwadinompho Primary School today.

Introducing the show, host Ebba Aikutu said the show is an avenue for learners to share school activities, best practices and create their own content. The show also serves as a platform for children to interact.

“To participate in the show, teachers and schools principals are simply requested to send a short message to a number provided on the show and we contact them to show case their talent,” said Aikuti.

The interactive radio show has had a great impact on the lives of its young audiences. Elvie Erastus, sitting under the tree with her younger siblings and friends and who is now a secondary school learner, said that she grew up listening to the show.

“I was able to improve grammar through this radio show. I also learned good tips from fellow learners through the show, things that we would emulate at our school. The show has also taught me the importance of education and discipline which enables me to progress academically,” she said.

Erastus is a prime example of the impact of interactive radio. To this, Namibia bears testimony on the effectiveness of radio as the country joined the rest of the world in commemorating the sixth world radio day under the theme Radio is You, heeding to the call for radio to engage listeners.

Minister of Information and Communication Technology, Tjekero Tweya said that the impact of radio on Namibians’ daily lives is immeasurable, adding that the theme is befitting as it stresses the importance of radio’s engagement of listener.

“It is important that we make listeners part of our agenda setting,” said the minister on Monday at the commemoration held at Okahandja town, 60 km out of capital Windhoek.

According to Tweya, through sharing information, entertainment and education, all voices irrespective of gender and social classes are heard.

“I therefore call upon all radio stations to clarify to and inform their listeners by engaging them on issues that contribute to sustainable development goals, issues of benefit to the nation and world at large,” he said.

So far, Namibia’s Communication Regulatory Authority has issued a total 34 broadcasting licenses, pushing the country’s radio coverage to reach 78 percent.

           

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