Malawi Communications Regulatory Authority (MACRA) has warned that it will revoke licences of 10 radio stations including MIJ FM by 17 October this year for failing to comply with relevant licence conditions, including failure to pay applicable fees.
Chisomo FM, Ndirande FM, Beyond FM, Dziko FM, Angaliba radio and television, MIJ FM , Joy FM, Power 101 FM, Usisya community radio and Galaxy radio station have been marked for closure by the regulatory body.
The decision by the authority was made following disciplinary hearings that were held between June and July 2022. The Authority has given the radio stations about 30-90 days depending on the radio to settle their scores with the authority.
According to a statement which MACRA has released, eight of the radio stations owe MACRA outstanding licence fees. These are Beyond FM (K20m), Chisomo Radio (K9.5m), Ndirande FM (K4.5m), Dziko FM (K37.6m), Angaliba radio and television (K39.2m), MIJ (K22m), Usisya (103,000) and Power FM (K33.7m).
On its part, Joy FM is required to pay K2.5m fine for being off air from 9th March to 13th July while Galaxy Radio is required to pay K2 million fine for being off-air since 27 May.
MACRA has also threatened to revoke the licence of Star Times Television over failure to pay outstanding licence fees of K67 million. The regulatory authority has given some of the radio stations up to 17th August and others up to 17th October this year to pay or have their licences revoked.
“Unless otherwise communicated in writing by the authority, failure to comply with the regulatory requirements as notified in writing to each licensee in this notice within the stipulated timelines will imply that the affect is no longer interested in providing the said communications service.
“As such the regulator shall proceed to take further regulatory action, including revocation or shutting down the associated service without further reference to the licensee,” reads part of the statement signed by MACRA Director General Daud Suleman.