Senegal’s Youssou N’Dour launches TV station

2010-09-02 13:55

Dakar. – Senegalese musician Youssou N’Dour, who owns a major media group in Dakar, has launched a private television station after an earlier dispute with the authorities over its financing.

TFM (Television Futurs Medias) is a cultural channel that went on air yesterday evening.

“Television is an instrument that serves to broadcast information. It can be an instrument of propaganda but it can also be dangerous,” said Prime Minister Souleymane Ndene Ndiaye as he congratulated N’Dour on the initiative.

N’Dour said: “I never had any doubt, because I always believed that TFM would broadcast, sooner or later.”

The renowned musician announced in May that he had obtained the authorisation to broadcast, which the Senegalese state had previously withheld after he first announced his plans in 2008.

The launch of TFM comes after conflict with the authorities which was officially about the means of financing the channel.

On May 1, President Abdoulaye Wade said that the refusal to give a licence to broadcast was based on the state’s wish to prevent any influence on its policy by “foreigners”.

N’Dour managed to persuade the government that the money was not coming from abroad and provided the evidence to back up his claim, Communications Minister Moustapha Guirassy said.

TFM is Senegal’s fifth privately-owned television channel.

N’Dour (50) owns a group called Futurs Medias, which includes the radio RFM (Radio Futurs Medias) and L’Observateur, a daily newspaper often critical of Wade’s government.

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