Muslims in the country could now breathe a sigh of relief after a long out cry to have a TV station since it is now official that the Malawi Regulatory Communications Authority (MACRA) has awarded a TV license to Muslims Association of Malawi (MAM).
MAM applied the TV licence in partnership with Mai Aisha Trust.
MAM Secretary General Sheikh Dr Salmin Omar Idrussi said he is delighted with the development.
“As Muslim Association of Malawi, we appreciate what the government through MACRA has done to us. This is great news to the Muslim community because we were the only ones lagging behind. Other faiths have their own television stations. Now that we got it, we are going to make use of the opportunity,” Idrussi said.
The MAM SG therefore disclosed that the station will roll out shortly after finalizing the remaining processes.
“We already have the equipment. We were just waiting for the licenses to come out. Now that the license is on our table, we will just wait to finalise other formalities that MACRA has advised us to fulfill, then TV Islam will go live on air,” he said.
Idrussi also emphasized to promote professionalism in the new TV station.
“We have well trained personnel in the country who graduated from international universities in media studies. We are going to engage them to make sure that quality and professionalism is achieved,” he said, adding that “The station will inculcate the teachings of our Prophet Muhammad (SAW) to many Malawians who are going to be watching our station. Therefore, I urge my fellow Muslims to welcome the TV as they did with Radio Islam,” he said.
On a related development, Al-Baraka Charity Trust has also been awarded a community radio license (ACT FM). The director of the organization Ibrahim Milanzie expressed happiness with the news and said that his organization will roll out shortly after finalizing other technical formalities.
“Our radio station will be looking at commercial issues, developmental issues, and religious issues in a purely Islamic way. We will be involving experts in our programmes to make sure that development in Malawi is progressing through our radio station.”
“We are going to reach everybody in Malawi. Whether a Muslim or a non Muslim. Al-Baraka projects do not discriminate on the beneficiaries between Muslims and people from other faiths. (We are also equal opportunity employers.) We have schools which we have employed non-Muslims. So, we are going to use the same approach with the radio,” Milanzie said.
MACRA on 23 June 2013 awarded 30 licenses to different radio and TV stations. There were 19 radio stations and 11 TV licenses in different categories. Among the 30, there are three licenses that are going
to the Muslim community. The stations are TV Islam, ACT FM for Al-Baraka Charity Trust and LMJ FM for Limbe Muslim Jamaat.
Angaliba FM and Angaliba TV stations that are intended to promote Yao & Islamic culture are also among the licences awarded by MACRA.