Myanmar’s first community radio Khayae FM goes on air

Union Minister Dr. Pe Myint  and dignitaries visit Khayae FM-Htan Tabin Community Radio.  Photo: MNA
Union Minister Dr. Pe Myint and dignitaries visit Khayae FM-Htan Tabin Community Radio.  Photo: MNA

Union Minister for Information Dr. Pe Myint spoke at the inauguration ceremony of the Khayae FM-Htantabin community radio in Htantabin Township, Yangon, yesterday.
This live citizen’s radio can now be heard every day from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. on 104.8 MHz, and it will be repeated the following morning from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m., local time. Khayae FM will broadcast programmes on agriculture, livestock breeding, health, education, entertainment and the daily news in Htantabin Township.
Dr. Pe Myint said that they are working towards transitioning from a state-owned media to community radio services, so that the voice of the people can resonate through them. The government has already launched several radio channels for ethnic people, and there will be more community radios in the future.
To realise freedom of speech and expression, existing laws have to be amended, and some time ago, it would have been against the law to broadcast a radio channel from a remote location such as Khayae FM. However, slowly these laws are being changed, said Dr. Pe Myint. He said that the shows from Khayae radio will express freedom of speech in a systemised manner, thus becoming a model for all other radios to follow.
Dr. Pe Myint said he hoped the radio will stay open long enough to become a sort of training centre for the next emerging community radio.
Next, German Ambassador Mrs. Dorothee Janetzke-Wenzel, Yangon Region Minister for Social Affairs U Naing Ngan Lin, Asia-East Europe DW Akademie Head Mr. Michael Karhausen and U Kyaw Htay, chairman from the local Village Development Committee, addressed the audience in turns. This was followed by Mr Karhausen, U Kyaw Htay and MRTV Director-General U Myint Htwe signing the memorandum of understanding for the Htan Tabin Community Radio.
The officials then cut the ribbon to open the Khayae FM radio station, and then took a commemorative photograph together. An early proposal for Khayae FM-Htan Tabin was signed between the Ministry of Information, MRTV, DW Akademie and the Village Development Committee on 28 August 2017. Members of the Village Development Committee will volunteer to help run the radio station. —Myanmar News Agency

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