Zimbabwe Mass Media Trust urged to expedite New Ziana turnaround

Zimbabwe Mass Media Trust urged to expedite New Ziana turnaround

Nyanga (New Ziana)-The Zimbabwe Mass Media Trust should move with speed to conclude consultations on turning around the national news agency, New Ziana, to enable it to play its
role in telling the Zimbabwean story, a Cabinet Minister said on Wednesday

Addressing an annual strategic planning review workshop here, Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services Minister Monica Mutsvangwa said it was high time the national news agency was revamped and capacitated to enable it to disseminate the national narrative to the
world.

“Through its partnerships with other news agencies throughout the world, New Ziana has been an important voice for the country to external audiences, helping re-shape to positive, previously negative perceptions about Zimbabwe.

“As the country engages and re-engages, the critical role of New Ziana and its foreign partner news agencies in this cannot be over-emphasised. It is important to disseminate our national
narrative to the global community.

“I, therefore, urge the Zimbabwe Mass Media Trust (ZMMT) to move with speed to conclude its turn-around consultations on New Ziana to enable the company to play its important role with much vigour and focus,” said Mutsvangwa.

Meanwhile Mutsvangwa stressed the importance of the information sector in the attainment of the country’s vision 2030.

“The centrality of information to the development of Zimbabwe cannot be glossed over. My ministry and its agencies constitute the hub and nerve centre of the country’s information and media sector, which is critical for national development.

“Given the centrality of the mandate of the ministry to national development it is critical for us to review what we have achieved as well as strengthen the gains made so far. As you work on the plans, bear in mind that some of the key missions of our strategies is for Zimbabwe is to mobilise a national participation, achieve improved international relations and to energize improved diaspora participation in national development,” she said.

Mutsvangwa said the Ministry continues to make strides in making sure that there is universal access to broadcasting services in view of the Government’s policy of opening up the airwaves.
The Broadcasting Authority of Zimbabwe licensed six new television stations, 14 community radio stations and seven campus radio stations.

“This will certainly give diversity of information to the members of the public. These services will be viewed by the public through the digital platform,” she said.

She however said the country’s digitalisation programme is behind schedule, hence the need for more support to bring it to its logical conclusion.

“The ministry will continue to plead with Treasury for funding of the digitalisation project to ensure that Zimbabwe enjoy the fruits of digitalisation. The programme was expected to have been completed in 2017. The availability of set-top boxes remains a serious challenge for the uptake of digital services. I encourage the business community to explore this business opportunity to supply set-top boxes to the millions of Zimbabweans who would want to enjoy these upcoming new television stations,” she said.

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