KwaZulu-Natal Premier Sihle Zikalala has on behalf of the Provincial Government paid tribute to one of South Africa's biggest radio stations Ukhozi FM on the occasion to mark its 60th birthday.
Founded in 1960 as Radio Bantu, Ukhozi FM started from humble beginnings to become one of South Africa's largest radio stations with a whooping listenership of 7.8 million.
Throughout the years, Ukhozi FM has remained true to its mission to become a leading and credible voice.
It has also fulfilled its values of respect, trust, integrity and quality broadcasting without fail since its formation 60 years ago.
Ukhozi FM has been a great facilitator of unity and social cohesion in most challenging of times in the evolution of our society.
It has remained a true voice of the masses of our people. It has served to bridge the information and knowledge divide by ensuring that even the most rural of our population has access to similar and timous information.
"Even during this difficult time of the Covid-19 pandemic, Ukhozi FM has remained a fountain of knowledge and information during our efforts to flatten the curve of this virus which has turned our lives upside down," said Zikalala.
Zikalala lauded Ukhozi FM for playing a leading role in the preservation of our culture and identity. UKhozi is one of our greatest exports internationally.
"Ukhozi has a rich colourful history of delivering on its mandate of educating, informing and entertaining the public," said Zikalala.
Ukhozi FM radio has promoted local content in a remarkable way and with distinction, including giving tradional music a voice when it was not fashionable to do so.
It was Ukhozi FM that recorded the first recording of Ladysmith Black Mambazo, whose founder and legendary uBaba Joseph Shabalala recently passed on, at their Durban studios in 1960.
Other tradional music legends such as Soul Brothers, Mahlathini and MaHotela Queens also owe their prominence to Ukhozi FM which popularized their music on its programmes.
Ukhozi FM has also produced some of the great radio personalities over the years such as KE Masinga, Thokozani Mandlenkosi Nene, Lindiwe Ntuli, Welcome Bhodloza Nzimande and Cryil Kansas City Mchunu among many others.
In a Covid-19 free KwaZulu-Natal that we are daily working to create, we will ensure that this greatest national asset
and it’s contribution is properly celebrated.
"On behalf of the KwaZulu-Natal Provincial Government and the people of the province, we would like to salute this giant radio station for the pivotal role it has played in educating, informing and entertaining us throughout these years.
"We wish them strength as they continue go grow. We also wish all its staff members courage to deal with the challenge posed by the invisible enemy in the form of the Coronavirus epidemic. It is through their hard work of educating our communities about the danger posed by this virus that we can defeat it," concluded Zikalala.
#uKhozi FM 60
ISSUED BY THE OFFICE OF THE KZN PREMIER
For enquiries, contact:
KZN Provincial Government Spokesperson
082 884 8403
KZN Premier Media Liaison
083 253 0748