|In June, the Biso na Biso radio (BNB) will be two years old and boasts a positive track record. The Congolaise Industrielle du Bois, partner of the Fondation Chirac and the World Bank in this project, owes its FSC certification in part to the radio. As of the first quarter of 2011, certification extended to all its concessions in the Congo Republic: 1.3 million hectares.|
First community radio in the region, BNB broadcasts 150 hours per month with an average of 200 productions a month: investigations, interviews, music programs… It is overseen by a manager, an editorial committee, and a listening committee. Shows are produced and hosted by local populations: the Pygmies and the Bantus. They are either community-based reporters in the villages of the region, or hosts / presenters trained by the manager. For 3 months, the radio’s team was assisted by Julien Seka, a student of the Centre of Social Excellence in Yaounde.
Broadcasts are heard by thousands of people living in the forest, within a hundred kilometers of Pokola. BNB gives them a voice in the management of the forest alongside the Congolaise Industrielle du Bois. The radio raises their awareness concerning the conservation of resources and also informs them on their rights, on health issues, etc. Finally, thanks to this radio, villagers can transmit and present their cultures and traditions.
Even though the radio has now reached its cruising speed, it could reach a wider audience. Certain projects could go far to improving its listening audience: launching listening clubs and radio games in villages; including two other major dialects, the Bakouélé and the Ndjem; sending recordings of the most important broadcasts to villages that can pick up the BNB radio waves.
However, the key missing component to increase BNB’s impact are receivers in target communities and the installation of broadcast relays. There is also a lack of digital recorders for reporting and the financial resources to travel and report within the different villages.
To learn more
Video from Télé Congo on radio Biso Na Biso, in Congo Republic: