‘No’ to pirate radio stations | The Herald

via Editorial Comment: We say ‘no’ to pirate radio stations | The Herald May 9, 2014

We found the comments by Dutch Ambassador to Zimbabwe Mrs Gera Sneller that she saw nothing wrong with the pirate radio station Voice of the People’s broadcasts into Zimbabwe because it was broadcasting in line with the law in the Netherlands quite condescending and an insult to our collective intelligence.
For those who may have missed the story, Ambassador Sneller paid a courtesy call on Information, Media and Broadcasting Services Minister Professor Jonathan Moyo on Wednesday and in their deliberations, Prof Moyo expressed concern at the continued pirate broadcasts by the Netherlands-funded and hosted Radio VOP saying though the Dutch government had supported the liberation struggle it had not, at any time, funded a radio station to abet the cause of the Zanla and Zipra guerillas but now that Zimbabwe was independent, the Dutch were ironically funding a radio station for regime change propaganda.

In her response, Ambassador Sneller said as long as the radio station was legal under Dutch law, she saw no problem with its broadcasts into Zimbabwe.
It appeared lost on the ambassador that Zimbabwe and the Netherlands are two different countries and that even though we use Roman-Dutch law, our statutes do not allow pirate broadcasts.

The Broadcasting Authority of Zimbabwe, in particular, outlaws stations that are not licensed in terms of the Broadcasting Services Act.
BAZ has, in fact, since licensed two national stations and invited applications for community radio stations, where all applicants who are wholly or partly funded by foreigners do not stand a chance.

We thus find it odd that Ambassador Sneller believes that since Radio VOP is abiding by Dutch laws, it has the carte blanche to violate Zimbabwean laws.
This is the same thinking that sees the West refuse to accept the verdict of Zimbabweans as long as that verdict does not dovetail with the West’s foreign policy goals.

We find it quite odd that Westerners, in this day and age, still believe that their opinion is supreme, and our opinion inferior, even though Zimbabwean voters have retained the same verdict since our inaugural elections in 1980.

We would like to remind Ambassador Sneller of the absurdity of her position.
Diplomatic exchanges are predicated on mutual recognition.

When she was posted to Zimbabwe, she presented her credentials to President, and in so doing recognised him as the legitimate Head of State and Government of Zimbabwe, which mandate derives from millions of Zimbabweans who, even from the days of the dysfunctional inclusive Government, under the Global Political Agreement, collectively condemned the pirate radio stations.

We also take this opportunity to urge Zanu-PF and the Government it leads to walk the talk on the pirate radio stations.
On one hand, the revolutionary party is quite clear that pirate broadcasts are illegal but many a time we have heard Government officials and ministers being interviewed on the same pirate stations.

With such an ambivalent approach to the pirate stations on the part of Government, the Snellers of this world will continue thumping their long noses at our national laws.



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    Zbc broadcasts lies and propaganda, they are scared of people listening to a foreign radio station as zanu can’t control what they transmit. Maybe Moyo should make it illegal to listen to foreign radio stations like in Germany under Hitler. !!!

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    So long as a radio station is following the laws of the country where it broadcasts from, there is nothing wrong or illegal about what they do. It’s not a question of superiority or inferiority. For Zimbabwe to outlaw broadcasts from outside of it’s boarders is an attempt to control people’s access to the media, a task which is evil and ultimately destined to fail. The government might as well try to decide which books, magazines and newspapers are available to the people, as well as what television shows and movies the people watch. Is that a worthy enterprise for a government about to go bottom up because of a lack of new ideas?

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    ZimJim 10 years ago

    “….and an insult to our collective intelligence.”


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    roving ambassador. 10 years ago

    Instead of looking at more serious is sea of tackling the economy, Zanu is shouting and screaming over a radio station.
    Talk about solutions for job creation and food security.
    Talk about providing water and electricity. No Zanu has no interest in that.
    Bob is busy posing with some female battering,Gucci wearing idiot and thinks he is cool.
    Next he will be inviting some big brother tramp and give $100 000 as a gift when he cannot give to the Tokwe refugees. Thats Zanu for you. buffoons .

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    Mambo 10 years ago

    Hahahahahaha……..hahahahahahahah…….oooohhhhhhhh, thank the good Lord for The Herald’s daily editorial without which we wouldn’t have a good laugh. And well done to the zany party ministers who contribute to Pirates!

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    Michael Saruchera 10 years ago

    Its all because airwaves are restricted you big head,if you give broadcasting licence to your deputy Supa Mandianzira and Zanu Pf mouth piece the Herald you say Zimbabeans are free to apply for broadcasting licences.These so called pirate radio stations will surely mushroom because Zimbabweans are starved of factual news.

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    matombo chiremba 10 years ago

    Free the airwaves Jona and you will not worry about SW radio stations as Zimbos will not even tune into them. They tune into them because you want to control what they listen to, isn’t it? Why are you shouting at Chihuri when you are a worse off enemy of the Zimbos’ freedom?? Are you not the brains behind AIPPA and POSA? Do the right thing Jonathan if you want to have the slightest chance of being forgiven by Zimbos Jonathan!!!!

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    ” With such an ambivalent approach to the pirate stations on the part of Government, the Snellers of this world will continue thumping their long noses at our national laws.”

    What laws?
    This is absolutely champion.
    There is no legit government in Zim.
    We got a bunch of crooks taking our country back to the dark ages.

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      Doris 10 years ago

      WTF?? When did people start “thumping” their noses! Kkkkkkkkkkkkkk!, the word, I believe is “thumbing” their noses.!

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    The argument of a teenager not a serious adult. When will these Herald writers grow up and start to behave and write like adults.

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    John Thomas 10 years ago

    The Herald is an insult to the dignity and intelligence of Zimbabweans every day.

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    Justice 10 years ago

    Thieves and murderers presuming to lecture anyone on abiding by the law, makes me vomit!

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    History repeats itself they say. Remember VOICE OF ZIMBABWE in Maputo, we in the same situation. When people are starved for balanced reporting thy look for alternatives. Why these did not exist in the early 80S. That is always the case when people are in a struggle for freedom.

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    Daddy Chikos 10 years ago

    We do not focus on the symptoms of a disease you must address the causes and you already know it.People need a medium through which they can freely air out their views not propaganda channels.You are not carrying out the wishes of the so called millions whom you claim voted you.It should not be about you guys it is about the people.

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    gorongoza 10 years ago

    Nhai Herald, will you please apply a bit of bain in what you write? So was radio Zimbabwe illegal in Mozambique in the 70s? Why was it allowed to operate? If it meets the laws of the country where it is set up, it definately not illegal. Anyone can access it from wherever they want, be it Ghana, Nigeria, Comoros, South Africa, Newzealand etc…so what really is your story here?