Union leader wants Radio, TV license fees shared among broadcast stations

Wed, Feb 14, 2024
By editor


A Union Leader, Mr Dare Durosinmi, on Tuesday advocated that radio and television license fees collected by the local government, should be shared by broadcast stations offering the service.

Durosinmi, who is the Vice-President, South-West Zone, Radio Television Theatre  Workers Union (RATTAWU), made this appeal in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos.

He said that this was one way for government to support broadcast stations for improved and proper coverage.

The RATTAWU vice-president, who was talking on the backdrop of the World Radio Day, decried the current cost of running a broadcast station as being huge.

He complained that the huge cost of running broadcast stations was due to poor power supply and cost of fueling.

NAN reports that the World Radio Day is celebrated annually on Feb. 13 as decided by UNESCO on Nov. 3, 2011 during its 36th conference.

The theme for the 2024 edition is, “Radio: A Century of Informing, Entertaining and Educating.”

Durosinmi said that the astronomical increase in fuel price had made the business very difficult with some radio stations having been forced out of business.

He said that the closure of radio stations was nothing healthy for a nation, adding that when radio stations cease operations, information may not be disseminated at the right time.

He added that when information was not properly disseminated at the right time, rumour would take over.

“Government should subsidise the astronomical increase in fuel price for radio stations.

“Radio and television license fees is usually collected by the local government, but I have always advocated that it should be shared among broadcast stations that are offering the service.

“It is for the stations to be able to survive,” he said.

According to him, the core reason for radio is to inform, entertain and educate, despite social media infiltration; and that reason is still relevant  and evolving.

He said that radio as a medium of communication was still serving its purpose, adding that even community radio stations are on the Internet and leveraging on Information Technology.

Durosinmi said that in Lagos alone, there are over 50 radio stations serving different purposes, such as companionship, entertainment, education among others.

According to him, as a matter of fact social media complements the radio station and is not a competitor.

In a commentary by the Convener, Society for Journalism Enhancement Initiatives (S4JEI), Gbemiga Bamidele, the purpose of the World Radio Day was to raise greater awareness among the public and the media of the importance of radio.

Bamidele said that the Radio remained the key tool for facilitating grassroots citizens’ participation in nurturing and sustaining true democracy.

He said that the radio does this by creating and using information content that was driven by the needs of the grassroots for themselves and by themselves.

Bamidele said that the radio enabled the citizenry to partake in determining their future through developing the community and educating their people in a manner and language they could understand. (NAN)

14th February, 2024.