Tanzania shuts down dozens of radio and TV stations for license violations

communication tower in Tanzania

Tanzania Communication Regulatory Authority (TCRA) has suspended broadcasting permits of 21 local radio stations and 6 television channels for violating broadcasting regulations.

The stations include three stations under Sahara Media Group; Start TV Tanzania, Radio Free Africa (RFA) and Kiss Fm owned by a business tycoon and Uhuru FM, a station run by the ruling Chama Cha Mapinduzi (CCM).

According to a media statement issued by the authority Saturday in Dar es Salaam TCRA had earlier issued a seven day ultimatum to at least 40 stations to clear their pending bills.

“The stations have not paid their annual fees and other related taxes as provided under their broadcasting licenses,” the statement read in part.

“We issued a final warning last September to ensure they clear their debts by December 31, last year … only few extended their payment to January 4 as majority hadn’t made payment attempts,” the statement added.

The statement named the stations whose executive face three-month jail terms and possible revocation of their licenses. These are; Sibuka FM, Breez fM, Country FM, Ebony FM, Hot FM, Impact FM, Iringa manicipal Tv, Kiss FM, Kitulo, and Kifimbo FMs.

Others include; Mbeya city municipal Tv, Radio 5, Radio free Afrika, Musa Television Network, Pride FM Radio, Radio Huruma, Radio Uhuru, Star Tv, Rock FM, Standard FM, Sumbawanga municipal Tv and Tanga City Tv, Top Radio and Ulanga FM.

The decision by the government comes barely days after the same authority filed a lawsuit against six telecom companies for financial mismanagement.