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Govt Urges Fair Fees and Inclusive Growth for Community Radio Stations 

In a meeting held between the Independent Broadcasting Authority (IBA) Board and Hon. Cornelius Mweetwa, Minister of Information and Media, and Chief Government Spokesperson, several key issues were discussed, with a focus on community radio stations and media industry growth. 

The government has urged the IBA to ensure fair annual operating fees for community radio stations. The objective is to enable these stations to continue their crucial role in disseminating information across the country, contributing to local job opportunities. 

Minister Mweetwa commended community radio stations for their commendable work in highlighting government achievements and promoting its programs. 

The Minister encouraged the media industry to take advantage of the tax waiver on broadcasting equipment, as outlined in the 2024 budget, to facilitate expansion. 

Minister Mweetwa expressed satisfaction that, during the two years and five months of the New Dawn Administration, IBA has not closed any media house, aligning with the government’s commitment to media freedom. 

The government emphasized its desire to see more licenses issued, irrespective of political affiliations, promoting inclusivity in the media landscape.

The Minister urged young people to leverage opportunities provided by the government, such as the Constituency Development Fund (CDF) loans, to set up radio stations and improve their lives.

Expressing concern over the abuse of freedom of expression and hate speech, Minister Mweetwa implored IBA to enhance its vigilance on such matters, calling for responsible broadcasting.

The Minister thanked media houses, especially those in the private sector, for their support in the fight against cholera. He urged those yet to join to actively participate in this critical public health initiative.

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