Overseas broadcaster reports jamming


July 10, 2006
Original Case: March 7, 2005

SW Radio Africa


SW Radio Africa, a private broadcaster based in the United Kingdom and founded by exiled Zimbabwean journalists, reported June 26, 2006 that its medium-wave broadcasts into Zimbabwe were jammed in the capital, Harare.

The announcement came over a year after the station’s short-wave broadcasts were scrambled within Zimbabwe, starting in the lead-up to March 2005 parliamentary elections. SW Radio Africa had expanded the number of frequencies carrying its broadcasts and added a medium-wave transmission to counter the blockage.

The station broadcasts independent political reporting and commentary, as well as phone-in programs featuring Zimbabwe residents, and has won several international awards for its work.

In 2005, a government spokesman said that authorities were “not in any way blocking SW Radio Africa as falsely claimed.” The same article denounced the broadcaster as “heavily sponsored by ex-Rhodesians to illegally transmit pro-opposition and imperialist propaganda to Zimbabwe.”

The medium-wave jamming coincided with a report from the U.S.-funded broadcaster Voice of America (VOA), stating that the medium-wave transmission of its own Studio 7 service to Zimbabwe, which is on the air for 90 minutes each weekday, was being blocked in Harare.