By Faith Chimutsa
The Zimbabwe Association of Community Radio Stations (ZACRAS) sends its condolences to the Khumalo family and friends on the passing on of Chief Mabhikwa- Vusumuzi Khumalo who died in road traffic accident this Sunday evening.
Khumalo was instrumental in the formation of then Jotsholo FM, now 41 FM in Lupane as he helped mobilize the Lupane community towards the setting up of the radio initiative.
“It was due to the commitment of Induna uMabhikwa that organisations like ZACRAS and MISA Zimbabwe managed to implement activities in Lupane at a time when the first republic was not so keen on media reform particularly the inclusion of community radio stations as part of the three tier broadcasting system,” said ZACRAS Chairperson Tobias Saratiel.
“During the Constitution making process and the Information Media Panel of Inquiry (IMPI) instituted by the government, Chief Mabhikwa was instrumental in mobilizing the community and ensuring the realization of the community radio agenda,” added Saratiel.
Years later, Zimbabwe has witnessed the licensing of 14 community radio stations due to the support from traditional leaders like the late Chief Mabhikwa.
At the time of his death Khumalo was a board member for the Broadcasting Authority of Zimbabwe (BAZ) championing the cause for community radio stations in the country.