Utility Authority (PURA), Wednesday held a day knowledge sharing forum for
commercial radio stations at the Metzy Residence Hotel.
Addressing the participants, Amie Njie, Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Information Communication and Infrastructure said she hoped that the forum will enable discussion and sharing of ideas on all sectors to identify necessary approaches needed to enhance the growth of the broadcasting sector.
She said even though the broadcasting sector was subjected to PURA regulations but over the past years it has largely been operating through self-regulation, especially in relation to content, saying their responsibilities are huge undertakings, giving the ubiquitous nature of ICT, media and broadcasting,
Ansumana Sanneh, Director General of PURA said the broadcasting sector, particularly radio has grown significantly over the last few years, saying there have been some number of new stations with a wide variety of public interest programmes.
He said although the investments are welcome, especially in the light of huge broadening space for divergent views, it is also imperative that traditional radio platforms are safeguarded. “This forum is convened as part of our mandate to regulate public utilities.”
Mr. Sanneh said they are cognizant of the closing boundaries between traditional radio and online platforms, which, he said have allowed radio to expand its presence and reach. “In effect, almost all radio stations currently have digital presence, allowing you to broadcast even outside the confines of The Gambia. Such a situation allows for the creation of new economic opportunities but also warrants a thorough assessment of best practice approaches towards decorum, respect and tolerance in broadcasting.”
Alieu Ngum, chairman of PURA board of director said the aim of the forum was to foster close collaboration and information sharing between PURA and stakeholders within the broadcast sector.