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ECOWAS to take over UNMIL Radio

BST/MICAT/Maximilian Kasseh, Jr.
Pan African Plaza,facility hosting UNMIL Radio,Monrovia
Pan African Plaza,facility hosting UNMIL Radio,Monrovia

MONROVIA, LIBERIA-The Regional body, ECOWAS, has announced in Monrovia its preparedness to take over the United Nations-run broadcast facility, UNMIL Radio, with a goal to transform it into a regional broadcaster.

ECOWAS said it intends using the facility to broadcast media contents and promote ECOWAS values of regional integration, peace and commerce across all fifteen member states.   

An ECOWAS Commission delegation, headed by its Vice President Edward Singhatey, made the pronouncement Tuesday, during a courtesy call on Information Minister, Eugene Nagbe, at his Capitol Hill office in Monrovia.

Mr. Singhatey informed Minister Nagbe that the impending hand-over of the UNMIL Radio facility is in line with a United Nations Security Council resolution transferring the operation of the asset over to ECOWAS on the back of the UN mission’s closure in Liberia.

Minister Nagbe, in response, announced the willingness of the Government of Liberia to collaborate with the ECOWAS Commission in the hand-over exercise of the facility in addition to plans to expand broadcast across the region, adding that the country is glad to be the host of an ECOWAS regional broadcast radio and television facility.

Minister Nagbe further noted that the Liberian Government’s cooperative posture reflects the commitment of President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf to promote ECOWAS’ mandate of peace and regional cooperation.

President Sirleaf, the recent past Chairperson of the ECOWAS Heads of State and a prominent and well-respected member of the ECOWAS Community, continues to commit to regional peace, cooperation and integration. 

Both parties agreed to organize an expert meeting to conclude the technical details around the transition and expansion plan as well as frequency acquisition across various member states.

He said the expert gathering will be followed by a ministerial meeting of all fifteen members’ states of ECOWAS.

Broadcast will be done in the commission’s three official languages, including English, French and Portuguese.

The new take-over initiative will see the extension of the broadcast region beyond neighboring countries such as Ivory Coast, Sierra Leone and Guinea, currently covered by UNMIL Radio.

The formation of an ECOWAS Radio is in line with a declaration of the ECOWAS Heads of state in 2000, commissioning the establishment of a regional radio to broadcast media contents to all 15 member states with the purpose of promoting ECOWAS’ values.

The radio content also seeks to target ECOWAS citizens residing in the region and members of the ECOWAS Diaspora.


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