The Wole Soyinka Centre for Investigative Journalism (WSCIJ) joins the rest of the world to celebrate the 9th World Radio Day with the theme “Radio and Diversity”.
Radio was birthed early in the 20th century and is the oldest broadcast medium with the widest audience in the world. It is currently taking up new technological forms and devices to keep up with 21st century demands.
Through the human voice, radio, engages a vast plethora of sound and music effects to inform, entertain and inspire listeners across diverse class, gender, culture, age and language. More than 75 per cent of people in developing nations have access to radio as it can reach the remotest communities and tongues, irrespective of their socio-economic conditions, with information and inspiration.
Across Nigeria, radio is still unarguably the most readily available medium that can disseminate information to reach the widest audiences among the conventional and new media channels. Every state in Nigeria has at least 1 radio station. Most have an average of 5 while states like Lagos, Kano, Kaduna and Oyo have between 20 to 35 each.
The theme this year, “Radio and Diversity”, focuses on diversity and plurilingualism – in the newsroom and the airwaves. Radio has contributed to the world’s sustainable co-existence by bringing people and communities together by no mean measure, and it is worth celebrating.
Part of the objective of the World Radio Day is to spread awareness among the public and the media to raise the importance of radio. It also encourages decision-makers to establish and provide access to information through radio, enhance networking and improve international cooperation among radio broadcasters.
WSCIJ has been committed to the cause of a just, inclusive, transparent and accountable Nigeria stimulated by an ethical and sustainable media using the tools of investigative journalism for exposing corruption, regulatory failures and human right violations. We build capacities and enable a sustainable and just Nigeria where diversities are explored to strengthen and widen our reach as a people.
Programmes and initiatives such as the Wole Soyinka Centre Media Lecture Series, the Wole Soyinka Award for Investigative (WSAIR) and other Media Engagement Programmes by the centre are intentionally designed to promote cultural diversity while using the media (investigative journalism) as a tool to galvanise a socially just and inclusive society. Reporters and journalists engaged by the centre are carefully selected across cultural ties, gender and media organisations (public, private and community-owned) thereby amplifying the voices and stories of people from diverse backgrounds, class, language and gender.
Taking one of the 3 sub-themes for this year – to advocate pluralism in radio that includes public, private & community broadcasters – we recall one of our great ‘radio moments’.
Chinelo Ozoalor of Radio Nigeria (FRCN Enugu) won the radio category of the Wole Soyinka Awards for Investigative Reporting 2018 through her story- ‘NECO Paper Leak Enugu’ breaking a 9-year jinx. Listen here .
Succinctly put, Chinelo Ozoalor like many of her colleagues are using radio to ensure various sectors like education, health, security and so on health are reported for a just, inclusive, transparent & accountable Nigeria.
On this year 2020 #WorldRadioDay as always, WSCIJ stands poised to keep supporting the media in Nigeria to building trust and renewing hope in every citizen through training, outreach and resource documentation while promoting diversity in radio broadcasting.