By Mthulisi Mathuthu
SW Radio Africa
22 April 2014
Police in Bulawayo on Tuesday searched the Radio Dialogue offices, for what they claimed was ‘broadcasting material capable of dispatching information which can harm the interest of the state’.
Radio Dialogue production manager, Zenzele Ndebele, said about 10 police and CIO officers pitched up at the community radio station’s offices around mid-day and searched for the equipment, which they did not find.
Ndebele said when the police called at the office he was away but he received a phone call that he should report at Hillside police station. On arrival he was shown a search warrant which said the police had the information that he had ‘radio transmission equipment.’
Ndebele said the police, who were in the company of officials from the Postal and Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (Potraz), then told him to lead them to his house where they searched and again found nothing.
Last month Ndebele was acquitted on charges of contravening broadcasting laws. The charges arose after Ndebele was arrested last year following a police raid on Radio Dialogue during which police seized 180 radio sets. The radios in question were ordinary receivers with no transmitting capacity. Ndebele said he had no clue whether the latest development was related to the resolved case.
Radio Dialogue is a member of the Zimbabwe Association of Community Radio Stations (ZACRAS) which is pushing for the opening of the airwaves to multiple players.