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Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Mali leads West Africa in community radio development

Mali is leading the West African countries in the development of community radios, says the Global Information Society (GIS) Watch in its 2007 report.

The GISW 2007 report was launched for the continent at the just ended Third Annual SANGONeT "ICTs for Civil Society" conference and exhibition in Johannesburg, South Africa and was the first in a series of annual reports which examines the state of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) policy at local and global levels and particularly how policy impacts on the lives of people living in developing countries.

Out of a total of 238 community radios in the West Africa sub-region, the report said, that Mali has 120, Senegal 44, Burkina Faso 27, Niger Republic 24, Republic of Benin 22, Ghana8 and Nigeria 1.

ITRealms Online gathered that the report was drawn from 22 countries in four continents including Africa, Asia, Latin America and Eastern Europe as well as one report from Western Europe – Spain, just as most of the countries under review have some similarities between the countries, apart from Spain.

According to the report, excluding Spain, 21 others each showed obvious evidence of the “digital divide” which impacts on the majority of people negatively.

For instance, the report also presented an overview of ongoing and planned ICT initiatives in Nigeria, bordering on three key regulatory bodies, namely, the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), and the National Broadcasting
Commission (NBC).

In addition, the report decried the state of Nigeria as concerns community radio licensing and development in spite of achieving astronomical growth in telecommunications deployment.

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