ZIMPAPERS today launches its second radio station, Diamond FM in Mutare. We therefore give you live coverage of the event here.
ONLINE REPORTER: Simiso Mlevu
SOCIAL MEDIA: Timothy Elson Maponga
EDITOR: Happiness Chikwanha
The integrated media house was awarded a license to set up Diamond FM in March last year.
Zimpapers chief executive officer Mr Pikirayi Deketeke is on record saying as part of the company’s five year plan, the group is geared to extend its dominance as a content factory.
The launch of Diamond FM is thus consistent with the vision of the team being guided by Mr Deketeke.
Diamond FM is our first regional commercial radio project, which is an addition to the national licence we have for Star FM, as we expand our footprint in the broadcasting arena, Mr Deketeke said before.
As a media house, Zimpapers has proved to be committed to actively participate in the democratization process of the media landscape in the country.
In 2001, broadcast journalists intensified calls for the establishment and enforcement of a three tier broadcasting model through the African Charter on Broadcasting. Hence, besides being a leading organisation in fronting plurality in the print media, Zimpapers is now giving communities a voice as well as advertising platform.
10:45– Meanwhile guests have started arriving at the Manica Post offices where Diamond FM broadcasts from.
11:12 –Diamond FM station manager is Leander Kandiero, a veteran broadcaster who has worked for Power FM and Star FM.
11:12-The station broadcasts in various Manyika dialects making it unique and relevant to the people of Manicaland.
11:17– Minister of State for Manicaland Provincial Affairs Cde Mandi Chimene is present here at the launch.
11:18– The official program has started and delegates sing the national anthem.
11:21– Zimpapers Board Member Bishop Trevor Manhanga takes to the podium and makes salutations.
11:21– Bishop Manhanga recognises the presence of Ministers Mushohwe and Chimene.
11:23– Bishop Manhanga turns to the bible and reads two verses.”I am so happy we live in a nation whose God is the Lord. We live in a nation which recognises the existence of God.I am also happy that we as Zimpapers, we are serving under a God fearing Minister (Mushohwe).
“Moving to the chairman of Zimpapers, he is not known to many of you here unless if you are in the football circles.
“He used to own a football team, Amazulu, which would not play on Saturday. He is a member of the Seventh Day Adventist.”
11:28– “Our CEO, Mr Deketeke is also a Christian. So as Zimpapers, we are blessed,” says Bishop Manhanga.
11:29-Bishop Manhanga says it is because of the God-fearing leadership that Zimpapers is making profits under this economic malaise.
11:31– He has praised Zimpapers for launching Diamond FM and also supporting vendors in the town of Mutare.”
11:32– He has challenged supermarkets in Mutare to emulate Zimpapers by supporting informal business people.
11:34– Zimpapers Board Chairman, Mr Lupepe now making his address.
11:35-He starts with the salutations.
11:37-“I feel deeply honoured to welcome you to Zimpapers Mutare. We have offices across the country but today I welcome you to Manica Post bulding.
11:37– “I am excited to announce that Zimpapers has moved swiftly to become a fully integrated media house.”
11:37-Mr Lupepe has paid tribute to Manicaland political leadership for supporting Zimpapers.
11:38-He narrates the ownership structure of Zimpapers adding that the company has a mandate to defend national interest.
11:39-The board chair says Zimpapers is a futuristic organization.
11:40 -“It is for this reason that we have ventured into broadcasting. Diamond FM is not our first radio station. We have Star FM. These two are not the last radio projects.To the people of Mutare, Diamond FM is yours. Your radio station.”
11:45–Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Media, Information and Broadcasting Services, George Charamba is also present here at the launch.
11:52-Zimpapers CEO takes to the podium.
11:52-Mr Deketeke recognises the presence of Ministers and various stakeholders here present.
11:54-He says broadcasting units were born as a result of the shrinking newspaper business.
11:54-“Newspapers might not be in existence in the next 20 years.We were inspired by countries like South Africa and Kenya and we have gone the same route,” says Mr Deketeke.People are no longer buying newspapers (as before). They are now accessing media content through various digital platforms.”
11:57– Mr Deketeke says content generation is Zimpapers business and good journalism the strength of the group.
11:57-He assures the people of Mutare that the best is yet to come.
11:59-“Mutare is a vibrant city and we are here to celebrate in song and dance. We believe we have the best team driving Diamond FM”, he says. Mr Deketeke has also stressed that Diamond of FM staff complement is made up of locals.
12:01 – “Although Zimpapers started off as a colonial company, we have grown to tell the story of an independent Zimbabwe,” says the CEO
12:05Mr Deketeke has finished addressing delegates.
12:08– Mutare City Mayor, Tatenda Nhamarare takes to the podium. He congratulates Zimpapers on this great feat.
12:10-“As the residents of Mutare we are excited. The way we have been doing business has greatly changed since Diamond FM came on board. A number of people have been awarded the opportunity to be live on radio articulating various issues,” says Mayor Nhamarare.
IMAGES FROM EARLIER ACTIVITY
12:22 The Mayor’saddress has been short and he leaves the podium for Cde Chimene.
1223 – CdeChimene makes salutations in a Manyika dialect before switching to Ndebele to greet Ndebele speaking Zimpapers Board members.The Minister says she will then speak in Chingezi (English).
12:24-“I am very happy. What is happening today is a great thing.This is a great day for us the people of Manicaland because we are being given the station(Diamond FM)officially. Mutare is desperate of investment and the launch of this radio station is a great feat,” she says.
12:24-“We do not want anything that might chase away investors. We are serious about that. We do not want corrupt people.”
12:26-“We believe if more domestic investors follow your footsteps, it will give confidence to more investors from outside the country who are not sure of (our) environment.”
12:28-Given the rich diversity of our culture and educated people, no investor will go wrong, she has said.
12:30 – Cde Chimenehas appealed to Zimpapers and the Ministry of Media, Information and Broadcasting Services to ensure that the local content policy applies at the newly established station.
12:32-“If our artistes are not producing enough, our dialect on its own is content. By merely opening our mouth, people laugh,” she says as delegates burst into laughter.
12:39-Turning to vendors, Cde Chimene says she hopes Diamond FM will help in articulating issues to informal business people.
12:44 -CdeChimene says it used to frustrate her that the neighbouring country, Mozambique has several regional radio stations yet Manicaland had none.
12:46– She has called on the people of Manicaland, especially those of Mutare city to support Zimpapers through advertising.
12:49-“Diamond FM offers you an advertising platform. Advertising your weddings. Don’t cry foul tomorrow when your wife has been snatched because you did not advertise. People didn’t know,” says Cde Chimene in a humorous mood.
12:51-Minister Chimene has called on visiting delegates to sample the beauty of Mutare.
12:56-Minister Chimene has finished making her address.
13:04-Star FM Programs Manager, Napoleon Nyanhi says as the big brother, they (Star FM) can’t help but be emotional.
13:05-He pays tribute to Zimpapers Senior Management which worked tirelessly to ensure the successful establishment of Diamond FM.
13:06– Nyanhi congradulates Diamond FM on the launch.
13:11– Ministry of Media, Information and Broadcasting Services permanent secretaryMr George Charamba is now addressing and starts by making salutations.
13: 13 MrCharamba pays tribute to Diamond FM staff for making an impact in the province.
13:15-The air waves were freed with the liberation of Zimbabwe. What has been left was granting licenses to deserving candidates. Zimpapers has been a deserving candidate and hence you are launching Diamond FM today.
13:20 Mr Charambahas called upon the Manicaland province community to support the radio station through adverts.
13:21 -He ends his address by inviting Minister Mushohwe to the podium.
13: 23 -Media, Information and Broadcasting Services Minister Dr Chris Mushohwe recognizes all who are present here and congradulates Diamond FM on the launch.
13:24-The Minister starts by responding to a jest made by the Mayor of Mutare who jokingly said council will increase rentals for Zimpapers to befit the status of the building.
13:26-He says government is preoccupied with improving the ease of doing business.
1327-Diamond FM is the second local commercial radio station to be launched. The first one was YA FM in Zvishavane.
13:28 Minister Mushohwe has warned other license holders who have not started broadcasting to do so or risk losing their license.
13:29-The minister has encouraged media houses to adapt or be thrown into extinction by emerging digital technologies.
13:30– I have no doubt that Zimpapers invested heavily towards the establishment of this radio station.
13:36-He has encouraged Zimpapers not to be afraid to import skills which may not be possessed by locals.The success of this station rests on its ability to balance competing interests of the varying audience base, says Minister Mushohwe.
13:38 I have no doubt that Diamond FM has packaged local content to fill the many hours it will be on air.
13:40-He appeals to the creative individuals from the province to grab the opportunity and exude talent embedded in them in order to make a living.
13:40-The issue of local content should challenge the people of Mutare to rise to the occasion. Let us make sure it becomes part of us and we become part of it.Minister Mushohwe says he is hoping to see other provinces enjoying information dissemination through their local stations.
13:41-He has added that the government is busy with the digitisation programme to ensure that they accommodate as many broadcasters as possible.
13:43-The minister says the International Telecommunications Union had set June 2015 as the deadline for switching off analogue to digital.
13:46-Once we are done, every corner of this country will have access to airwaves. Binga is one such place. I went there and I believe we will succeed. The first launch must start from there, says Minister Mushohwe.
13:47– The broadcasting sector offers investment opportunities for our media graduates. We have a lot of media graduates who are roaming the streets.
13:49– Minister Mushohwe thanks Zimpapers for rebranding the building that houses Manica Post offices and Diamond FM studios.
13:50– I want our minds to be renewed in the same manner the building has been. Diamond FM should, yes be a centre of entertainment but above all, a unifier. It should transcend above political lines, regional lines and dialectical lines, he says.It should transcend above political lines, regional lines and dialectical lines, he emphasizes.
13: 56-I applaud Zimpapers and I think it is appropriate to thank the leadership present here.The minister pays tribute to the Mayor of the City of Mutare for his ability to separate politics from business.
14:00-He has called on Diamond FM staff to broadcast content which will compel listeners to stay tuned to their radios.Minister Mushohwe has assured media houses of continued support urging journalists to report positively and objectively about the country.
14:10 Negative coverage will chase away investors thereby shrinking the market even for media houses.He calls on media to avoid alarmist headlines because they destroy investment and employment opportunities.
This ends our live updates and you can enjoyDiamond FM ONhttp://diamondfm.co.zw/