I s s u e 23
- M A R C H ,
2 0 0 1
A Push Forward
for Independent Print Media
Women's Community Radio
Purchase for Better Prices
Exchange June 6-7 2001
Equipment to Community
Local Public Radio
soon on air in Gaza
Media Fighting the
Push Forward for Independent Print Media
The month of March marks an important development for the
independent print media of Mozambique, as both the Communication
Centers of Tete and Beira were opened, on March 4th and 9th
respectively. In both centers the opening marks the culmination of a
one and a half year process, starting on September 26, 1999, when a
UNESCO National Consultative Meeting identified the sites for three
experimental centers to be developed.
The core idea of the Communication Centers being the creation of
added impact of the independent print media nationally, the Centers
are meant to further stimulate production of provincial and regional
newspapers and newsletters, as well as to function as a base for
correspondents from independent newspapers elsewhere in the country,
as such strengthening wider coverage in national newspapers.
Electronically transferring and locally printing newspapers from
elsewhere is technically possible with the equipment available at
the centers. Presently it is being assessed whether this could be
considered a viable and useful way of short-cutting the present
severe distribution problems of the print media in the country.
To meet these needs the centers are equipped with computers with
internet connection, printers, scanners, fax, photocopiers and copy
printers. Documentation centers with TV sets etc. for reception of
international news and VCRs will facilitate training functions of
The centers are managed and run by local associations of independent
media, the creation of which was stimulated and supported by UNESCO.
To ensure long term sustainability, the Centers are to be run as
self-financed entities, meaning that all (!) use of the centers will
be paid for. Rates have as such been established for hourly use of
the computers, printing, copying as well as for using the
telephones, fax and internet. The price-systems operate with
differential rates, ensuring cost-prices for members of the
associations, and commercial rates for external users.
The UNESCO support includes payment of the above-mentioned
equipment, training and running costs the first six month, while an
initial maintenance fund is being generated. While the centers are
created and run by the local associations, the equipment will remain
in the ownership of UNESCO for a 5 year period.
While UNESCO is negotiating with groups in Nampula and Chimoio for
co-operation of opening ‘independent media cornres’ in existing
media operations, and planning to support the opening of two more
centers in its phase II starting July 2001 (possibly in Inhambane
and Quelimane), the core challenges will be for the centers to
maintain the fine balance of securing a sound financial survival,
and at the same time remaining centers for ‘freedom of expression’
rather than photocopy shops or graphic production enterprises. A
continued awareness of this balance, will be supported by UNESCO
through training and exchange seminars between the centers.
Women’s Community Radio
March 1-2 a seminar was held in Chimoio to finalise plans for a
Network of Women in Community Radio Stations in Mozam-bique,
producing – or planning to produce – programmes on issues of concern
22 women from all parts of the country re-presenting all the
different types of commu-nity radio stations on air, contributed
active-ly to the finalization of a Strategic Develop-ment Plan
including a concrete action plan. Pre-production of 18 programmes on
topics of core importance to women will be produ-ced and distributed
by the network, which will also organize exchange through a monthly
newsletter and quarterly meetings.
The network is open to all groups working in this area in
Mozambique. The report of the meeting can be received from the
UNESCO Media Project upon request.
Purchase for Better Prices
Paper represents presently around 70% of the total budget of the
print media in Mozambique – and paper prices have been rising due to
the floods in 2000 and the devaluation.
For these reasons UNESCO has since a first meeting on the issue October
4, 1999 been looking for ways of organizing a mechanism for joint
Based on a consultant report on the issue, a meeting on February 16 this
year finally managed to bring the independent print media to agree
on a structure and operation-mode for such a mechanism, which is
foreseen to start the joint paper purchase before the middle of this
year. The result will be close to 30% lower paper prices for the
participating print media. UNESCO will initially cover
administration costs and ensure that the scheme gets well
Exchange June 6-7 2001
Mozambique will have at least 30 community-oriented radio stations
on air late 2001. To evaluate the experience and strengthen the
sustainability of all of these important media, UNESCO June 6-7 will
host a national com-munity radio seminar on the concept and
ex-perience of community radio in Mozambique.
Based in the very varied experience of the ICS, the Catholic and the
independent, association-based stations, the objective of the
seminar is to identify concrete ways of securing
sustainability-plans for technical support, fundraising and
Communities to go on Air
the present phase of the UNESCO/UNDP Media Development Project is
slowly drawing towards the end, the major project component in
support of Community Radio is sizzling with activity and excitement.
communities to possess the needed capacity and insight to turn their
dreams of having an own communication medium into reality is not
done overnight. Through a well researched and closely monitored
pilot phase, a number of important lessons have been learned by all
involved parties, leaving us assured that the new, powerful
commu-nity voice will stay in the hands of the local
community-controlled structures created.
is - also - in this gestation process at the core. Formal, high
quality training courses has been provided in the central
disciplines: Management, Programming, Audience Research and
Technical Operation & Maintenance. Informal, broad-based
community training has furthermore been provided to these
communities through a consultant Process Coach, carrying and
promoting the community mobilization to secure effective community
structures and ownership, as well as radio production training.
Strong local community ownership feeling and groups of between 20
and 40 well trained volunteers have been the result of the work of
the coaches. Finally study trips to other community radio stations
and to the studios of the provincial delegations of the national
public radio, have provided the community volunteer groups with
valuable insight through exposure to different realities.
from training, the persons involved in the community radio
management committees and the paid staff have taken part in a number
of management workshops as the one reported in our February
newsletter, combined with a series of monitoring-cum-capacitation
missions that have been carried out by project staff and
UNESCO/UNDP Media Development Project is planning a number of
activities to ensure that no experience is lost, but rather
channeled into the continuing discussion of how to most effectively
empower communities to establish, run and sustain their own voice,
and as such through access, participation and increased capacity to
further develop the growing democracy of Mozambique.
book and a video documentary on the above described experience will
see the light in June-July and a national conference will take place
June 6-7, 2001. This conference will assess the community radio
experience of the country, as it has emerged through the ICS
supported community radio stations, the Catholic community-oriented
stations and the independent association-based stations.
A LONG WALK TO
To finalize the Community Capacity
Assessments of the five locations identified to take part in the
UNESCO supported Wave II, the Chief Technical Adviser and the
National Co-ordinator of the Media Project traveled to Milange mid
March to speed up preparations for the setting up of social and
organiza-tional structures for the establishment of a Commu-nity
Radio in that district of the Zambezia Province.
The mission culminated with the signing of a Memorandum of
Understanding, whereby four locally represented NGOs - the
Mozambican CMM and ORAM together with IBIS and Nova Fronteira -
agreed to form an Installation Group of the future Community Radio
Association. A consultant will for three weeks help to operacionalise
the many activities foreseen in the memo of understanding.
April 11 the initial General Assembly of the Milange Community Radio
Association will take place, marking an important step in the wish
to establish a Milange-controlled community radio station.
The other communities receiving UNESCO support to training,
equipment and running costs are: Dondo, Metangula, Matola and
Bagamoyo within Wave II and within Wave I: Homoine, Chimoio and
The community of
Metangula has now also received the important strengthening of the
community mobilization and radio training activities, through a
Metangula-based UNESCO Process Coach.
As such nine UNESCO coaches are now working in Homoine, Chimoio,
Cuamba, Metangula, Milange, Quelimane, Dondo, Matola and Bagamoyo.
& METANGULA RADIO HOUSES
are presently being signed with companies selected to renovate the
future Community Radio Stations in Dondo and Metangula. The
communities have already started turning the outdoor area into
conducive community spots, for community activities to be brought on
HELPING TO FIGHT AIDS
The Media Project inaugurated early
March a package of HIV/AIDS-related activities comprising a number
of AIDS training activities, a regular briefing-kit on the epidemic,
and related events.
In March a seminar was held in Maputo involving organizations,
experts, journalists and editors specialized or working on HIV/AIDS
related programmes. The seminar was instrumental to pin-point the
role of the media in general and to inspire the production of a
one-day training package on HIV/AIDS, designed to be included into
any planned training activity for journalists, editors and community
media activists alike. The package will be made available to all
training organizers in Mozambique and other African lusophone
The training package
precedes a series of three 8-day training courses on "Reporting
HIV/AIDS", to take place from May to July, in Maputo, Beira and
Quelimane. A total of up to 60 editors and journalists are expected
to take part.
Parallel to this, the
Media Project is also initiating the production of bi-weekly
briefing kits with facts, figures, some stories and other
information on the pandemic, aimed at inspiring the media with
relevant and effective AIDS related coverage. The briefing
kit-series will be launched in a one day high level editors
conference in Maputo in May.
April is the month to
witness the appearance of the first issue of the monthly newsletter
of the Women's Community Radio Network. As described in the past
issue of this newsletter other activities of the women's network are
production and exchange of programmes and experience as well as
The importance of access to a national,
public, high quality, free journalism education is at the core of
the two day discussions to take place at a high level UNESCO seminar
to take place May 17-18 in Maputo. For more information contact the
Equipment to Community
Homoine, Chimoio and Cuamba – in that order – will from mid April
receive a team of technicians from Cape Town to finalise the studios
and install the equipment. The sta-tions are expected to be on air
from May on.
Radio soon on air in Gaza
Radio Mozambique (RM) is now procuring the transmission equipment
funded by the UNESCO Media Project, which will facilitate the
technical side of getting the last provincial delegation planned on
air. Besides from this AM transmitter for the Gaza provincial
delegation, an FM transmitter for the same area will ensure improved
reception of the national RM channel in Portuguese.
Fighting the HIV/AIDS Pandemic
As part of an extensive HIV/AIDS information and communication
package developed by UNESCO within its Media Development Project, a
one-day training package is present-ly being put together by
Mercedes Sayagues for the NSJ Trust for use in all training cour-ses
for Media personnel. Other activities that will soon take place are:
Three 8-day courses on Reporting HIV/AIDS, a bi-weekly feature
service for all media in Mozambique, a one-day conference for
editors and a Web-Portal for Community Radio is being designed.
c/o UNESCO, P.O.Box 1397 Maputo, Mozambique
Tel. + 258.1. 498752/ 490840 Fax +258.1.498717