BBC tells Africalike it is

2012-06-18 00:00

A DAILY news programme in which the stories of Africa are told by African journalists.

That, in a nutshell, is what viewers can expect when they tune in the BBC’s new prime-time hard news programme Focus on Africa tonight at 7.30 pm on DStv channel 400 and TopTV channel 400.

Veteran broadcast journalist, Ghanaian Komla Dumor, said at a media launch for the programme that he was excited about the prospect of showing the rest of the world that African news had more to it than simply civil wars and famine.

“A superficial approach to news coverage of Africa is unacceptable,” he said. “After decades of turmoil and uncertainty, a new Africa is emerging. Old stereotypes are being challenged and a new, compelling narrative is being written.

“Africans are demanding more accountability from their leaders, and a vocal middle class is challenging the status quo. I am incredibly excited to be part of a new BBC programme that will provide solid coverage and analysis of Africa’s challenges and prospects.”

Dumor, who will present Focus on Africa alongside Sophie Ikenye, joined the BBC in 2007 after a decade of broadcast journalism in Ghana where he won the journalist of the year award.

“To be able to present a daily African news programme is really exciting,” he said.

And to ensure that Focus on Africa reaches the widest possible audience, the BBC is looking at forging partnerships with public broadcasters in territories not covered by satellite television.

Said Solomon Mugera, the BBC’s Africa Editor: “Africa is now one of the fastest developing news markets in the world … Our partnerships with leading African broadcasters play a key part in these future plans.”

• Six special episodes of the current affairs interview programme Rendezvous, hosted by Zeinab Badawi, will be broadcast on BBC World News from mid-June with guests including President Kikwete of Tanzania.

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