VOP FM Promises Distinct News And Talk Based Station

“We want to be the leader in talk shows and hard news in Zimbabwe,” VOP FM Chief Executive Officer John Masuku said in a presentation before the Tafataona Mahoso led Broadcasting Authority of Zimbabwe (BAZ) on Thursday.

“VOP FM would be a world class, 24 hour national talk radio station. We want to be a top radio station. Our programming and news output would be driven by a team of experienced broadcasters and journalists.”

Masuku said the station will target the 16-60 years age group which, according to Research International, constitutes 59 percent of the population.

Vox media Productions chairman and co-presenter David Masunda also said VOP FM would tape from its decade long broadcasting experience.

“We have for the past 10 years been keen to apply for a broadcasting licence,” he said, “We have a passion for broadcasting. We have a wealth of broadcasting experience and we would like to comply with the Global Political Agreement which says that all those Zimbabweans who might be broadcasting anywhere outside must come and apply for a licence.”

It is not the first time Vox Media productions, the commercial arm of Radio VOP, has applied for a broadcasting licence.

The company also applied back in 2005 but despite the applications, no private broadcaster was issued with any licence.

VOP FM is the last among four prospective broadcasters that were short listed for hearings by BAZ. Others prospective broadcasters are KISS FM, AB Communications and Zimpapers Talk Radio.

Radio VOP said its main language for communication would be English which would also be “blended with popular music and talk hosted by future star broadcasters”.

According to Masuku, VOP FM will also provide slots for music, sports, religious and cultural topics.

The station will also promote public speaking and writing in schools using English and indigenous languages by sponsoring various competitions.

Masuku further promised full compliance with various statutes that regulate broadcasting in Zimbabwe.

Within the first three months of being issued with a licence, the prospective radio station will install transmitters in Harare, Bulawayo and Masvingo that will feed other parts of the country and will commission a transmitter every six months in other parts of the country.

The station says it will use state of the art equipment that is compliant with the latest studio technology.

The directors of Vox Media productions, which is also part of Radio Voice of the People Communications trust, are Masunda, Nhlanhla Ngwenya, Sharon Samushonga, Tafadzwa Ralph Mugabe, Arnold Tsunga and Masuku.

If granted a licence, the current Radio VOP, which is broadcasting from outside and also runs a 24 hour news website, will transform into VOP FM.

BAZ chairman Mahoso could not commit himself into any disclosure as to when the first station can be issued with a licence.