MACRA says Zodiak most listened radio in Malawi : ‘Vote of no confidence to state-run MBC’

The Malawi Communications Regulatory Authority MACRA says privately-owned Zodiak Broadcasting Station (ZBS) has emerged the most-listened to radio station in Malawi beating the state-run Malawi Broadcasting Corporation (MBC).

MACRA conducted the survey in 2012 in 19 districts and each radio – that has been airing for over one year – was rated on its own.

In listenership survey results published Monday, ZBS – which also streams live online-  polled 76 per cent of those surveyed countrywide with MBC coming a distant second at 43 per cent.

During the MACRA survey, Power 101 – a youth-inclined entertainment station, polled nine per cent while Capital Radio, scored eight per cent.

Gospel Kadzako: Zodiak leads
Gospel Kadzako: Zodiak leads

Power 101 is the first private radio station to be introduced in Malawi in a multiparty democracy while Capital Radio was the second.

Malawi Institute of Journalism (MIJ) FM got 15 per cent while Joy Radio of former president Bakili Muluzi polled ten per cent in the listenership survey.

Some Christian radio stations did not do too badly in the survey. Radio Maria of the Catholic Church got 27 per cent approval while Transworld Radio got 15 per cent.

Zodiak  started broadcasting in November 2005 and it will be rolling out a television station in December 2013.

ZBS Managing Director Gospel Kazako , a former MBC broadcaster described the rating as  “currency of approval”.

“We don’t compete with others, we are our own competitors, when we set standards we always make sure we beat them,” he said.

The results of the survey have been descrbed by media gurus as a ‘vote of no confidence’ in how the state broadcaster MBC  is being run.

“It could be people have lost faith in MBC because its open biasness towards the political party in government,” said Zeleza  Manda, a lecturer in media studies at the Polytechnic, the Blantyre-based constituent college of the University of Malawi is quoted saying.

Five years ago, Zodiak’s  Kazako was chosen as the top budding male entrepreneur at Malawi’s Diversity Leader Awards.

He was commended for setting up “a radio station truly aimed at the whole of Malawi.

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