Felex Share Senior Reporter
Traditional leaders from Matabeleland want Government to give them national IsiNdebele broadcasting licences for radio and television to advance the Ndebele language and culture. The five chiefs, led by Chief Ndiweni and MDC legislator Priscilla Misihairabwi-Mushonga, yesterday met Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa to air their grievances.

Speaking after the meeting, Chief Ndiweni said they wanted to benefit from broadcasting licences coming with the digitisation programme.
Government has indicated that six of the 12 radio stations to be opened after completion of digitisation would be open to anyone.

Said Chief Ndiweni: “We came to the Vice President to ask for assistance so that we can be let into the media arena, that is television and radio.
“We need at least one licence, a national one, which will cover the whole country and will be speaking in Ndebele for that whole community to express itself.

“We have a lot of youngsters who are already in South Africa and Botswana doing music, art, drama and they are doing well and we want them to come back and assist other young people. We felt that the digitisation programme would assist them and give them an outlet for their views and opinions.

Chief Ndiweni said awarding the Matabeleland region a national broadcasting licence would unite the people.

“I say that strongly because history tells us that you need to allow the people to have self-expression,” Chief Ndiweni said. “If you deny a particular group that, you will be sitting on a pressure cooker.”

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