ACORAB Nepal celebrated its 17th establishment day on March 23rd, 2018 by organizing an interaction program on Community Radio Policy and its collaboration with local governance. Government’s delegates and concerned stakeholders to the community radios discussed on the community radios issues and strengthening it mechanism for independent broadcasting. Many of the panelists focused on the necessity of government’s concern for making it more reliable and sustainable. The program was conducted in collaboration with World Vision International Nepal.
Chief Guest of the program Honorable State Minister Mr. Gokul Baskota, Ministry of Communication and Information Technology inaugurated the program with his commitments in supporting the community radios by prioritizing in forming community radio friendly policy and programs for the growth and sustainability of community radios and said that community radio has played an important role in raising awareness of the common citizen.
Furthermore, the State Minister also mentioned that the further lobbying and management will be done in providing the public welfare/ service advertisement to community radios in simple way and ensures that the collaboration between local level governance and community radios will be effective significantly in informing listeners.
Likewise, Mr. Bidhya Sundar Shakya, Mayor of Kathmandu Metropolitan city shared that the metropolis city also has operated radio and showed his interest to work in collaboration with ACORAB. He expressed that the community radios should disseminate positive news and information to impact in person’s life.
Whereas, the Mayor of Birjung, Mr. Bijay Kumar Sarawagi stressed on the suggestions of community radios in preparation of local governance policy as well as stressed on the inclusion of women’s participation in radio and local governance for successful outcome and ensures the help from Birjung Metropolitan city.
In addition, Mayor of Tulsipur Sub Metropolitan city, Mr. Ghanashyam Pandey expressed his commitment to allocate budgets and funds for local community radios in case of emergency and its sustainability.
Moreover, Coordinator of Committee of Organizing Federation and Federation of Village Federation, Ghanshyam Khatiwada, said that the radio has become effective on information flow. According to the local level and community rights, many subjects have been able to reach the local house of the community. Local level of role in the local level will be important for the local radio-based community radio to be more effective. He emphasized on the necessity of community to inform the public.
Ashok Byanju, Mayor of Dhulakhail Municipality and Chief of Nepal Municipal Association, said local level is ready to grow together with the community radio and local government has said that there is no problem when the local government operates the radio. He also emphasized the need for communication policy based on collaboration, partnership and co-operation. He said that the formation of communication policy should be shared between the local level, the government and central government.
Member of the Parliament, Yagya Raj Sunuwar said that community radio was flowing out the most important information. Local, state and central government emphasized the need for community radio to be sustainable. Sunuwar urged the government, local, state and center to give special attention to the construction of communication policy.
Parliament Member, MP Prakash Yadav warned the local radio station to be in danger when the radio station was operating on local level. He thanked the community radios for broadcasting basic health services issues to the very important information that is being conducted locally. He expressed his commitment to join all the steps he needed to make community radio stronger.
Disaster Expert Dr. Ganga Lal Tuladhar said that community radio has played an important role in the management of the disaster management. Community radio fought against the outbreak of the disaster. Speaking at the risk of the disaster, Nepal is at fourth place. He focused that disasters couldn’t be stopped but the damages could be reduced and prevention after disaster. While focusing on the local situation, he emphasized that community radio should focus on the transmission of message that will be protected from the disaster.
Administrator Mr. Kashi Raj Dahal said that community radio was effective medium to raise the quality in people’s life. He informed that the communication policy should be shared with all the parties, adding that it is necessary to bring and modify the additional subject from the discussions with the experts of concerned sector.
In conclusion Binod Dhakal, expert in child friendly local governance shared that the government of Nepal endorsed the Child Friendly Local Governance (CFLG) national strategy 2068 with 39 indicators related to children’s rights. He also stressed the necessary of investment in today’s children for future resources for prosperity, sustainability and development. Therefore, Community Radios/ Media have played vital role and can be more effective by focusing on the dissemination of capacity development content and listening to children’s issues. The allocated budget of 10% from government or 5% from local government is not sufficient and should be done more work from local governance.The half day program was concluded by the thanks speech by Ms. Sashi Kala Dhahal, Vice-President of National Assembly and vice-President (woman) of ACORAB. She also committed to support in forming community friendly policy and pointed that the community radios of rural and urban are different from each other.