The obsession with the explosion of social media can obscure an important fact: radio remains a dominant source of information in Africa, according to Joseph Warungu, editor of the African News and Current Affairs at the BBC World Service.
The death of radio is not a homogenous development across the world, he told a workshop held at the conference.
“In Africa, radio is still much alive. As the African urban elite are held in traffic jams — to and from work, every morning and every evening – it’s the radio that keeps them company and feeds them with news, information and entertainment,” he told the workshop, co-sponsored by SciDev.Net.
“Even my old grandmother in deep rural Kenya knows where to get the knob and tune the radio for her latest news and information needs.”
“Radio will remain a big force to reckon with in Africa, as it’s the most widely-used, it’s handy, reaches the widest audiences and is cheaper to use. Its not threatened by the other new internet-based media growth,” he added.
Peter Wamboga-Mugirya, SciDev.Net contributor in Uganda