The objective of the workshop was to equip grassroots community members with knowledge and skills for establishing and operating community radio stations. At the broader level, it was to contribute to expanding the plurality of the media in Nigeria and to enhance the capacities of local communities to use media as a platform for democratic discourse.
The programme was organised by the Nigeria Community Radio Coalition (NCRC) in collaboration with the Institute for Media and Society (IMS) and with support from UNESCO-IPDC.
The workshop was attended by grassroots community members from various parts of Okun community in Kogi State. The participants were selected from the diversity of the community as expressed through gender, age grouping, faiths, geography, among other considerations. The programme was facilitated by community radio development experts while activities were conducted in plenary and group work sessions.
At the end of the programme, the participants expressed gratitude to UNESCO-IPDC, the Community Radio Coalition, facilitators, and unanimously issued this Communiqué.
The participants observed as follows:
- The government has tremendously expanded the radio broadcasting sector especially in the past twenty years of liberalization.
- The expansion in the broadcast sector has provided opportunities for people in the various sectors of the economy but the grassroots segment of the country is yet to get proper access to enjoy broadcasting resources.
- The efforts of the government in putting in place arrangements for the emergence of Community Radio through, for example, the design of a policy document, provisions in the Broadcasting Code and issuance of Presidential directive on licensing, are commendable.
- The people of Okun community have, for a long time, occupied the front row among communities which take development as serious business in this country.
- The people of Okun community consider Community Radio an important tool with which they will want to take their development efforts to the next level.
The participants recommended as follows:
- The Federal Government should ensure that the issuance of Community Radio licenses starts immediately as directed by the President.
- The National Broadcasting Commission should consider Okun community as a priority beneficiary in the first set of Community Radio licenses to be issued in the country.
- The Nigeria Community Radio Coalition (NCRC) should continue the capacity development programme on Community Radio development for communities across the country.
- The sons and daughters of Okun community, both at home and in the diaspora, should embrace and promote the establishment of a viable Community Radio in Okunland.
Adopted in Kabba, Kogi State, Nigeria, this 14th day of November 2013.