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Title:Community radio advocacy in democratic Nigeria: lessons for theory and practice
Authors:Ojebode, Ayobami
Akingbulu, Akin
Periodical:Ecquid Novi: African Journalism Studies
Geographic term:Nigeria
community participation
Abstract:This article describes the challenges of working toward an enabling policy and legal environment for community radio in Nigeria. Given the acute development problems the country faced and the past years of autocracy, expectations were that when Nigeria became a democracy, it would immediately deploy all tools, including community radio, to enhance development and participation. Theorists suggest that democracy should be accompanied by enlarged opportunities for expression occasioned by, amongst others, the removal of the restraints imposed on media ownership. But ten years into democracy, Nigeria has yet to allow the establishment of community radio stations. The article identifies five phases in the advocacy for community radio and how it has reached a deadlock: academic agitation (1980s), birth of a coalition (after 1999), hopes on the horizon (2005-2006), manpower development (2007-2008), hopes dashed (since the new government was installed in May 2007). Enlarging the opportunities for expression, in this case through licensing community radio stations, has proved to be as difficult in Nigeria during democracy as it was in the military period. Lessons and challenges for theory and advocacy are discussed. Bibliogr., sum. [Journal abstract]