Zanu PF MP Backs ‘Pirate’ Radio Stations

Chivi,- Zanu PF legislator, Irvene Dzingirai, pleads for legalisation of radio stations operating from outside the country. Member of Parliament (MP) for Chivi South constituency said jamming Radio VOP and Studio 7 was an expression of violation of freedom of choice for citizens.

Dzingirai becomes the first Zanu (PF) MP to reveal that the people in his constituency are benefitting more from Studio 7 and RadioVOP as compared to the state run Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation (ZBC).

“We are unfair to the people in rural areas who only get vital information from Studio 7 and RadioVOP. A survey that I carried in my constituency reveals that more than 60 percent of the people dependent on pirate radio stations for information.

“We see no reason for not fastening our pace in legalising these radios when all top government officials including politburo members such as Rugare Gumbo are speaking to these media houses every day. My argument is that if these radios are illegal, then why are some of us then giving exclusive interviews to these radios,” said Dzingirai.

Dzingirai said he will not leave any stone unturned to fight for the legalisation of these radios.

“I want to see a situation whereby exiled journalists would be recalled to operate at home – this way, they will certainly help a lot in reporting issues which will build our country. These radios are discussing national issues; I have heard people like (Paul) Mangwana giving out vital information about COPAC to these radios.

“In fact, I have realised that I am the only Zanu (PF) MP who was not speaking to these radios and starting from now onwards I will award any journalist an opportunity to talk to me for national building issues and I will inform the people in my constituency to tune to these radios for crucial information and updates,” added Dzingirai.

Dzingirai told RadioVOP that people in his constituency had a habit of going into secret places to listen to these radios but often they are shocked to get exclusive interviews from top Zanu (PF) officials.

“The multimillion dollar question is why you would speak to illegal media houses?” he asked.

Dzingirai has gradually managed to become popular in his constituency for giving independent views about topical issues affecting people directly.