By Tafadzwa Muranganwa
Zimpapers-owned commercial radio station’s (Star FM) overdrive giving air time to the man of the cloth is raising the ire of some listeners who think it is now way too much.
On social media, people are expressing discontent with the radio station which was last year rated by Zimbabwe All Media Products Research (Zamps) as having amassed 51 percent of the urban population listenership, saying its intimacy with prophets leaves a lot to be desired.
Dear lord when you burn false prophets in the hell, please don’t forget Star Fm and some of its DJs for being… https://t.co/qSkNvAtUxx
— The Business Connect (@ZimBu25) July 22, 2017
@ProfJNMoyo Hi Hon Jonso, what’s yr take, national radio eg every morning Star Fm z broadcasting adverts from fake prophets cure of hiv,jobs
— Mukoma Masimba (@RChairuka) May 25, 2017
Listening to Star FM m made to believe that they nolonger have content at all. Every programme is about prophets. Why? Isnt paganism?
— Kupeta Noah 1 (@KupetaNoah1) August 22, 2017
It’s no secret that the station is facing hard times just like any other new radio station and Star FM appears to have found a lucrative revenue booster from the prophets who are also luring congregants to their ministries.
Popular prophets like PHD Ministries leader Walter Magaya, Goodness and Mercy Ministry founder Tapiwa Freddy, House of Grace Ministries leader Prophet Shame Hungwe among many others are now permanent features of the radio’s programming and advertorials.
The programmes and advertorials seem to be aired anytime of the day so much that it becomes difficult to those who are not interested to evade them.
One colleague of mine once said, “since there are rumours of incentives for radio presenters on outside broadcasting duty, it seems there’s stampede among fellow radio presenters to endear themselves to the prophets and traditional leaders so that they can get mula”.
The brand ‘Star FM’ is now a subject of ridicule as some have now christened it ‘Prophets FM’. Other listeners are also being put off by the ‘adult-programmes’ that are done by popular Tilda Moyo which some feel they are too pornographic.
Last year, Kuwadzana East legislator Nelson Chamisa raised the concern in parliament with the Ministry of Media, Broadcasting and Information Services to look into the issue saying there was a possibility that the programmes were reaching to children and young adults and could have negative repercussions.
With the public outcry over the station’s obsession with the prophets, it is up to the management to take a gamble-either or to ignore the listeners’ plea which is most likely to be detrimental all in the name of chasing the elusive dollar.