Building community radio in Nigeria
Community broadcasting is one of the defining features of a plural and diverse media landscape. Among the characteristics of community radios are that they are owned and managed by communities; carry community-oriented programming; pursue a social development agenda; and use participatory methods in their activities. From different parts of the world, reports attest that community radio gives access and voice to marginalized peoples; empowers them to improve their lives and immediate environment; helps build capacities of societies to hold leaders accountable; helps to tackle poverty, support conflict resolution, preserve cultures and promote sustainable development. There is no doubt that these characteristics would also hold true in Nigeria.
Significant progress has been made in Nigeria in gaining policy level and regulatory recognition for community broadcasting. The government announced (in late 2010) approval for the licensing of community radio and the National Broadcasting Commission is to start issuing licences. Alongside the continuing national level advocacy of the Nigeria Community Radio Coalition, support is needed to raise awareness and capacity for implementation at the grassroots level.
This project is designed to make a strategic contribution to the development of community radio in Nigeria through training of grassroots communities and regional awareness raising events. It builds on over five years of community radio advocacy in Nigeria and meets needs clearly expressed by civil society and community-based organizations to increase awareness of community radio and to build capacity for community radio development. The purpose is to support four pilot community radio initiatives with planning and start-up workshops in various locations throughout Nigeria.