AN EVALUATION OF POLITICAL PLATFORM ON RAYPOWER 100.5FM IN BUILDING NATIONAL UNITY

AN EVALUATION OF POLITICAL PLATFORM ON RAYPOWER 100.5FM IN BUILDING NATIONAL UNITY

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CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.1     BACKGROUND OF STUDY

The significance of Radio to human life cannot be overestimated. This is true because beyond the physical requirement of food and shelter man needs to develop. The urge for Radio in the area of social development and fostering unity is a primal one and in our contemporary civilization a necessity for survival. That is to say without Radio no society can exist, much less develop and survive. For existence as well as the organization of every society, Radio is a fundamental and vital process for social development and fostering national unity.

The Radio serves essential functions in the society by accepting and fulfilling certain obligations to the society. These obligations are mainly to be met by setting high professional standard of informativeness, truth, accuracy, objectivity and balance. It could be seen from the foregoing functions that Radio provide information and education, personal identity, entertainment most importantly integration and social interaction; integration and social interaction by giving insight into the circumstance of others as well as by helping with the development of social empathy. Radio is very important to developing communities everywhere, it also seeks to bring the people together and helps to advance national unity.

However   in the  recent  years  Radio had undergone enormous and generally speaking, positive changes. Coinciding   with the general rise in educational  levels  of the overall population, especially in terms of social development. The profession of Radio is very much developed because it integrates Radio into public policy dialogue, process and plan developmental strategy and outreach campaigns for public policy, dialogue and consensus building, thus fostering national unity.

Radio has improved in the quality of production and service to the society, particularly in the promotion of economic and national unity. The obstacle to the use of communication technology to help marginalized groups to improve their situation lies in a lack of political will, and also in policies that fail to recognize the importance of communication as a social process that can help to bring change and development. For example, Radio leaps the barriers of isolation and illiteracy and it is the most economical electronic media to broadcast and receive. But despite the two billion radio receivers in the world and some 20,000 radio stations, radio is still not being used systematically to help fight poverty, malnutrition and poor health in the developing world.

The need for community participation at all stages of a development initiative has been widely recognized since the late 1970s. However, it has not been sufficiently recognized  that participation and communication are different sides of the same coin. Only by creating communication processes in which people in the community enter into dialogue and analytical discussion within themselves, will they participate and decide for themselves on changes that affect their lives and become active in implementing them. Radio in particular can provide the platform for the public dialogue through which people can define who they are, what they want, and how to get it, at the same time building long term capacity to solve problems in ways that lead to sustainable social change and development, thereby fostering unity.

Distinct from other forms of broadcasting, radio is non-profit services that is owned and managed by government, but however there are some private radio stations and community radio stations usually managed by the community and private individuals. The programs are based on audience access and participation and reflect the special interests and needs of the society. The earlier radio stations were simply radiotelegraphy systems and did not carry audio. The first claimed audio transmission that could be termed a broadcast occurred on Christmas Eve in 1906, and was made by Reginald Fessenden. Whether this broadcast actually took place is disputed. While many early experimenters attempted to create systems similar to radiotelephone devices where only two parties were meant to communicate, there were others who intended to transmit to large audiences. Charles Harold started broadcasting in California in 1909 and was carrying audio by the next year.

For the next decade, radio tinkers had to build their own radio receivers. In the Hague, the Netherlands, PCGG started broadcasting on November 6, 1919. Dr. Frank Conrad began broadcasting from his Wilkinsburg, Pennsylvania garage with the call letters KDKA. KDKA’s first commercial broadcast was moved from Saxonburg, Butler County, PA on November 2, 1920.

Later, the equipment was moved to the top of an office building in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and purchased by Westinghouse. KDKA of Pittsburgh, under Westinghouse’s ownership, started broadcasting as the first licensed “Commercial” radio station in November 2, 1920. The commercial designation came from the type of license; advertisements did not air until years later. The first broadcast in USA was the results of the U.S. Presidential election, 1920. The Montreal station that became CFCF began program broadcasts on May 20, 1920, and the Detroit station that become WWJ began program broadcasts beginning on August 20, 1920, although neither held a license at the time.Radio Argentina began regularly scheduled transmissions from the Teatro Coliseo in Buenos Aires on August 27, 1920, making its own priority claim. The station got its license on November 1923. The delay was due to the lack of official Argentine licensing procedures before that date. This station continued regular broadcasting of entertainment and cultural fare for several decades.

Radio is the older of the two main forms of electronic media, the other being television. Radio in commercial broadcast form has been around since about 1920. Of the two it is far better adapted to abstract thought (such as, to give a begin example, book reviews) and ideally is- well infinite as regards projection of subject matter. The demands are different- sight gags and talking heads are, mercifully, out of the question, but radio has enormous potential for entertainment and enlightenment as well as mere news, weather, traffic and sportive events. I have been off TV many years but an avid radio fan, and particularly espouse WBAI and similar underground stations. Radio can go, where TV simply cannot, and in a sense is far more democratic-there are or were 7 main TV channels in the New York area prior to digitalization. There are many times this number of different types of radio stations with widely divergent points of view and personalities.

Community media, and in particular radio, can provide the platform for the public dialogue through which people can define who they are, what they want, and how to get it, at the same time building long-term capacity to solve problems in ways that lead to sustainable peace and unity.Distinct from other forms of broadcasting, radio is non-profit service that is owned and managed by a particular community, usually through a trust or a foundation. It is also managed by the community, and its operation rely mainly on the government own resources.

Also radio reflect and promote local identity, character and culture by focusing principally on local content. Culture is how the people of a community talk about their past and their future. It is what they care about. Like life itself, culture is infinitely variable and constantly evolving. Community culture is also artistic expression through local radio, dance, poetry, theatre and storytelling. Local performers are encouraged to go on air uninhibited by considerations of the ‘professional standards’ they may have acquired from mainstream media. Culture is also language, so programming includes the languages of any minority groups in the country (Eyiah, 2004).

Also radio creates a diversity of voices and opinions on the air through its openness to participation from all sectors. Some discord is present in all communities, but the acknowledgment of conflict is necessary for democracy and for democratic communities. Radio tries to air objectively all sides of a discussion without itself taking sides. Radio encourages open dialogue and democratic process by providing an independent platform for interactive discussion about matters and decisions of importance to the country. In essence, the core of unifying process is the ability of people to hear and make them heard. Radio provides the forum for that to happen. This is consonant with the decentralization process in many countries that aims to being unified decision-making closer to the people concerned. And what is happening at the grassroots level- as portrayed by the radio programming can be heard by local government and private institutions, as well as being relayed to policy makers, thus making it possible to design unity initiatives that best meet the aspirations and needs of the people (David, 1999).

Radio succeeds when it grows out of the community’s sense of internal cohesion and consciousness. A country that analyses its needs in detail and thinks about the causes of its problems and marginalization will often come to the conclusion that it requires communication (Radio broadcast) to help people formulate common understanding and common goals. This is the foundation stone for a country setting up its own radio station.

The ownership and management of the future station are crucial issues that require good preparatory work. Even within the overall concept of country ownership of a station, there usually needs to be somebody, such as a foundation or an association, which represents the country’s interests and also provides a national unity. In addition, some sort of country radio needs to be formed to represent the different sectors in the country. The decision regarding all aspects of the ownership and management must be transparent and democratic.

1.2STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM

Radio, despite its growth faces age-old problem stemming from poor ownership structure, a weak financial base, low quality, lack of access to information and conflict with authorities. There is always the tendency to forget that rural residents which constitute the majority of means to disseminate information and as a result, its contribution to national unity is restricted. In addition to the above, despite a number of programmes aimed or shown reflects foreign cultures which have negative effect on our own norms and values, and this no doubt is detrimental to our national unity.

The role of radio station owned and run by a community, in providing the forum for the participatory, public dialogue which is essential for social change and fostering unity. The radio station is a platform for identifying and analyzing problems and their solutions, thereby determining development inputs that truly meet local needs. Open access to air complaints from the audience can pressure local authorities to adopt practices of good governance and transparency thereby fostering unity. Cheap and easy to install and operate, radio can also be the interface between poor communities and the internet.

The obstacle to the use of radio technology to help marginalized groups to improve their situation lies in a lack of political will, and also in policies that fail to recognize the importance of radio as a social process that can help to bring changes, national unity and development. For example, radio broadcasting leaps the barriers of isolation and illiteracy and it is the most economical electronic medium to broadcast and receive. But despite the two billion radio receivers in the world and some 20,000 radio stations, radio has still not been used systematically to help fight poverty, malnutrition and poor health and national unity in the developing world.

The need for community participation at all stages of a unity initiative has been widely recognized since the late 1970s. However, it has not been sufficiently recognized that participation and communication are different sides of the same coin. Only by creating communication processes in which people in the community enter into dialogue and analytical discussion among them will they participate and decide for themselves in changes that affect their lives and become active in implementing them.

The radio station is a platform for identifying and analyzing problems and their solutions, thereby determining development inputs that truly meet local needs. Open access to air complaints from the audience can pressure local authorities to adopt practices of good governance and transparency. Cheap and easy to install and operate, radio can also be the interface between poor country and the internet.

Listeners do not appreciate public radio primarily for its news programming. In the focus-groups undertaken throughout 1986, they spontaneously discussed morning edition, all things considered, and weekend edition more than any other programming. Radio listeners do not place a high premium on staying informed. They know they can get local news and headlines from commercial radios, and many of them do. Yet they tune to public radio for detailed national and international news coverage- the story behind the story. Getting well beyond headlines, public radio tells why an event occurred, what it means, why it is important, and what to expect next. This is important to listeners. They don’t care where programming is produced, as long as it maintains the qualities they value. Some listeners noted that some local shows do not always meet the standards of those produced by NPR.

Listeners value public radio’s distinctive qualities, and for them its national news occupies a unique position. They do not expect public radio to broadcast from “the scene”, they don’t fault public radio for its “inability” to provide local news, weather, and traffic- they can get all of this elsewhere. Indeed, when listeners discuss news on public radio they are talking about NPR news. There appear to be several reasons why national news is a definite listener drawn and local news is not.

Local news is not unique; it’s widely available on other radio stations, and this will not change soon. Of course, national news is also not unique- particularly on television. However, morning edition airs at a time when radio is better suited to listeners’ activities; and all things considered beats the television networks by ninety minutes. Many listeners cite lower “professional standards” in local productions; many say station-originated programming just isn’t as good” as NPR’s. Of course this varies widely from station to station. Listeners refer not to technical qualities, but to presentation styles and professionalism. Many say local programming does not possess the analysis, intelligence, depth, respect and professionalism they expect from (National) public radio.

Listeners are very clear about the “tones” of public versus commercial radio. To much in public radio’s audience, commercial radio sounds “loud, insistent, hard-sell, noisy;” public radio is “low key, calm, relaxed, soothing.” Public stations sometimes cross this line with negative audience reaction. For instance, the audio from syndicated traffic services usually does not match morning edition’s tone; in order to do so it would be better for the host to read the printed version.

There are many other ways stations can improve their tone, professionalism, analysis, and other appeals. But perhaps there are qualities inherent in local news which simply does not satisfy public radio listeners. Information bits such as weather traffic and school choosing seem much more useful than stories about fires, robberies, muggings-perhaps even more highly valued than city council reports. May be local events are perceived by listeners as transient or less universal than national and international events-less important to an audience that values public radio for its attention to the “important” things.

1.3OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY

The objective of this research is to:

i.                   To evaluate the role of Raypower on 100.5fm in fostering national unity.

ii.                 Examine how effective Raypower on 100.5fm is toward bringing the desired national unity.

iii.              To find out the problems of Raypower on 100.5fm as an agent of fostering national unity.

iv.              To find out problems associated with Radio Broadcasting

v.                 That Raypower on 100.5fm is really an instrument of Fostering National Unity.

1.4    HYPOTHESIS

In a research project of this nature there is always the need for some assumptions to be included in the course of the study. To this end, certain hypothesis will be put forward and tested during the investigation.

The hypotheses are usually stated in declarative sentence form either as a null hypothesis or as an alternative hypothesis. The under listed hypotheses are all drawn from our research in Raypower on 100.5fm in Lagos

Ho: That Raypower on 100.5fm is an instrument of Fostering National Unity.

H1: That Raypower on 100.5 is not an instrument of Fostering National unity

1.5       SCOPE AND LIMITATIONS OF THE STUDY

This research is to evaluate the performance of Raypower on 100.5fm as an instrument of fostering National Unity, 2003-2008, it will cover only the period stated above i.e. between 2003-2008.The study is limited by:

1. Time constraints within which to carry out the research as it is not easy to carry out class work and research simultaneously

2. Lack of sufficient   data for the   research And also some of the respondents are not willing to answer the questionnaire given to them

1.6SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY

This research work will help to enlighten the general public on the roles that Radio plays in fostering national unity in the country (Nigeria) and also to evaluate the performance of Radio Nigeria Kaduna.

The study will also help the policy makers at the Federal, State and Local Government to realize the contributions of Radio as an instrument of Fostering National Unity.

This will enable them to make reasonable budgetary provisions to the existing Radio agencies to enable them to perform more effectively for the benefit of the society as a whole.

This study will also help any other person interested to conduct research on the field of Radio and other media organizations, and to be able to build up where the researcher stopped.

1.7       DEFINITION OF TERMS

RADIO; Radio is the technology of using radio waves to carry information, such as sound, by systematically modulating properties of electromagnetic energy waves transmitted through space, such as their amplitude, frequency, phase, or pulse width

POLITICAL PLATFORM; A political party platform or platform is a formal set of principal goals which are supported by a political party or individual candidate, in order to appeal to the general public, for the ultimate purpose of garnering the general public's support and votes about complicated topics or issues.

NATIONAL UNITY; Unity represent a state of peace, state of harmony, a state free from violence and conflict


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